A Thing at Which I am Terrible [chocolate peppermint cookies]

Merry Christmas, dear readers.  Thanks for cozying up with me tonight.

Last Sunday evening, at 9:00 p.m., I put my feet up on our ottoman, and asked my husband to do something I knew he would dread.  I asked him to make me sit down when I need to sit down.

I am terrible at this.

On Sunday afternoon, I returned from the grocery store, armed with enough supplies to complete my holiday baking.  What I didn’t have was the energy to complete it.  I sat at the kitchen counter and unwrapped Hershey Kisses, I melted butter for blondies, and I creamed, scraped down, and beat all kinds of dough into submission.

chocolate peppermint cookies.

And then it was over and I was exhausted.

But I think my annual cookie bags were a hit with those who received them.  Especially these chocolate peppermint ganache cookies.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to reimmerse myself in The Great British Baking Show, which SCL got me hooked on, and which I cannot believe has only one season available to stream!  Let’s go Netlfix!  Let’s go Amazon Prime!

To make a couple dozen, you will need:

For the cookies:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup Dutch processed cocoa
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips

For the ganache:
16 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup heavy cream (Unless you’re exhausted and you forget, and then guess what?  They’ll still turn out fine)
1 cup crushed candy cane pieces

 

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, sea salt, and cocoa. Set aside.

3. With a mixer, cream butter and sugars together until smooth. Add in eggs, one at a time. Next, add in vanilla extract and mix until combined.

4. Gradually add flour mixture and beat until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chunks or chips. Scoop the dough into rounded tablespoons and place on prepared baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake cookies for 10 minutes, or until cookies are set, but still soft in the center. Don’t overbake. Remove from oven and let sit on baking sheet for 3 minutes. Move to a cooling rack and cool completely.

5. While the cookies are cooling, make the ganache. Add the chocolate to a large bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat just until it bubbles around the edges. Remove the cream from the heat and pour it over the chocolate. Let the mixture stand for 30-45 seconds, then stir until the chocolate melts and a smooth ganache comes together, about 1-2 minutes.

6. Lay out a large sheet of parchment paper or wax paper. Dip the cookies, halfway, into the warm ganache. Place the dipped cookies on paper. Sprinkle with candy cane pieces. Let cookies sit until ganache hardens, about 2 hours. To speed up the process, you can place the cookies in the refrigerator to chill.

Deep, Dark, Chocolate [olive oil and sea salt brownie cookies]

These.  Cookies.

olive oil sea salt brownie cookies.

Per usual, I pinned them ages ago, and way too much time passed between the pinning and the making.  AGOMYR and I have an affinity for sweets sprinkled with sea salt, and these are my current favorites in that department.  I made them with the darkest cocoa powder, and Ghiradelli chips.  They were indecently decadent.

To make 2 dozen, you will need:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup natural cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp hot water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (I tend to be one who laughs at the amount of chocolate chips, and then adds more.  This is plenty for those who like their cookies packed with ’em.)

Instructions

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the olive oil and sugar and mix until well combined.
  • Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each one.
  • Add the cocoa powder, flour, and salt and beat until a dough forms – it should be the consistency of a thick brownie batter.
  • In a small bowl, dissolve the baking soda into the hot water. Add dissolved baking soda and vanilla and beat until well combined.
  • Stir in the chocolate chips with a spatula.
  • Refrigerate the batter for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight.
  • When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Use a cookie scoop to scoop out heaping tablespoons onto your prepared baking sheets and sprinkle with sea salt.
  • Bake for 10 minutes, or until edges are set.
  • Let cool completely on the baking sheets then transfer to a wire rack to cool.