Monday, December 14, 2009

Mint Chocolate Chip Chocolate Cookies

MInt Chocolate Chip Chocolate Cookies

Several years ago my mother and I got into our heads to make chocolate cookies (something we had never done before). We tried two or three recipes without real success before I left back for college and, tragically, that was a quest left uncompleted. But it's stayed with me and this year, for our holiday baking, I decided to try mint chocolate cookies.

I used this recipe from Joy the Baker as the basis for my own. I hadn't made anything off her site yet, but I had been reading (and drooling) along for some time. I had faith that she wouldn't steer me wrong. And her recipie called for only real chocolate instead of cocoa powder which, in my book, was a Very Good Thing since the last two things I made with the Hershey's Special Dark Cococa Powder I have resulted in ooey gooey messes for no apparent reason.

8 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate , 60%-72%(chopped or in chips)
3 Tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces) butter
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoons salt
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup Andes mint pieces

PREHEAT oven to 325F. Lightly grease your baking sheets.

CHOP your chocolate into very fine pieces. Slice your butter into small pieces and place in a microwave safe bowl or double boiler with the chocolate.

Chocolate and Butter Close Up

MELT the chocolate and butter together. Be very careful not to scald the chocolate. Joy explains "To avoid heating the chocolate too much and possibly burning it, the best method is to heat till the butter is melted and the chocolate has partially melted, then remove from the heat. Stir until all the chocolate melts."

BEAT together sugar and eggs in a separate bowl.

MIX chocolate mixture, vanilla, flour, baking powder, and salt into the sugar and egg mixture. Add your chocolate chips and mint pieces last.

Chocolate Chip Mint Cookie Dough

DROP the cookie dough by rounded tablespoon onto the cookie sheets.

BAKE 10-12 minutes or until the tops have just cracked. Watch the first batch carefully to see when this occurs to prevent overbaking.

LET SET a few min then REMOVE to wax paper to finish cooling.

My Thoughts
1. I found that once the chocolate cooled no amount of stirring would get rid of the lumps. Since the hubby assured me that it did indeed have to be smooth, we alternated 5 second bursts in the microwave with more stirring. Eventually we got the chocolate to be beautifully smooth. This is what you are looking for:


2. I like soft, chewy cookies. To achieve this it is crucial that you take them out of the oven before they look "done". If the edges are browned, they will be hard when they cool. What you want to look for is a cakey looking top (it shouldn't be shiny or slick). They will fall apart if you try to remove them from the baking sheet immediately or if you use too blunt of an instrument. Letting them sit on the sheet for a few min allows them to finish cooking out of the oven. Using a spatula with a very fine sharp edge allows you to get under the cookie rather than balling it up.

3. This dough was firmer and a bit more difficult to work with than my standard chocolate chip cookie dough. Be prepared for a bit more wrangling to get dough off of spoons, utensils, etc.

4. These cookies are amazing. Minty without being overwhelming. Perfectly chocolaty. They are dangerously addictive and it's hard to eat just one. My quest for a chocolate cookie is over!

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