Friday, April 23, 2010

No Fuss Chocolate Bliss


photo by Anthony Palatta

This recipe comes from a slim white volume called The Book of Afternoon Tea, one of British series of cookbooks called "The Book of..." published by HP books in the 90s. Though the recipe is titled "Double Chocolate Cookies," I like to call them "Reverse Chocolate Chip Cookies" because it consists of a chocolate cookie with white chocolate chips.

The ingredients and method couldn't be simpler. Cream butter and brown and white sugar, add egg and vanilla, then stir in some flour, baking soda, a pinch of salt (my addition to the recipe) and a mere two tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder. Amazingly, these two tablespoons pack a powerful chocolate punch. Be sure to use a good quality cocoa powder for this one.

Next, fold in some white chocolate chips. I've been experimenting with different brands. Most of the white chocolate chips you'll find in your ordinary supermarket aren't officially chocolate because they contain no cocoa butter. Just look at the ingredients and you'll see.

I've tried mine with both ordinary imitation white chocolate and expensive "authentic" white chocolate (miniature sized), and I have to say I think I prefer the imitation kind. The authentic stuff is too rich and competes with the cookie rather than compliments it, but see what you think.

Whatever you do, be sure and chill your batter for half an hour before baking. This ensures that your cookie will stay nice and moist after you bake it. When I use a 1-inch ice cream scoop, I bake them at 350 degrees for exactly 7 and a half minutes in my oven and they come out perfect. I let them rest on the baking sheet a few minutes to set before removing them.

So here's the recipe:

Reverse Chocolate Chip Cookies
(adapted from the Book of Afternoon Tea)

1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup white sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg, beaten
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder (go high quality here!)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup white chocolate chips (Nestle is fine)

Preheat oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment

Cream sugar and butter, then slowly beat in egg and vanilla extract. In another bowl, sift flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda. Stir into the batter, then fold in white chocolate.

Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Using a 1-inch cookie scoop, drop dough onto baking sheets, with at least two inches in between. Bake 7 to 8 minutes, until firm. Cool on baking sheets a few minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Yield: about 33 cookies

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