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When I made the brownies & blondies for Andy’s birthday, I realized how long it had been since I’d concentrated on recipes that were not cupcakes. My Pinterest boards for Bars and Cookies were woefully neglected, and I think it’s time I did something about that. In that spirit, this week’s recipe is adapted from Terry’s Chocolate Orange Cookies by What Jessica Baked Next. We’re just talking minor tweaks here; I made the cookies smaller, doubled the recipe, and used the substitutions instead of the actual chocolate orange chunks.
1 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
2 cups of light brown sugar
2 medium free-range egg, at room temp
2 tsp of pure vanilla extract
2 cups + 4 tbsp of plain flour
Pinch of salt*
1 tsp of baking powder
1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda
4 tbsp of cocoa powder
2 cups of milk or dark chocolate chips/chunks
2 tsp of orange zest
1. Preheat your to 190 degrees C / 375 F / Gas mark 5. Line two large baking trays with non-stick paper or parchment and set aside for later.
2. Cream the butter, sugar and vanilla together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat in to incorporate fully.
3. Now add the flour, pinch of salt, baking powder, bicarb and cocoa powder and mix until a dough comes together.
4. Finally, finish by adding the chocolate chunks/chips and mix in combine into the dough.
5. Divide the mixture into balls- we use a cookie scoop for ease. Spread out evenly on the baking trays. Bake in the preheated over for 7-9 minutes, until spread out and crackling on top.
6. Once cooled, allow to cool on the trays for 5 minutes- in this time they will harden and will become more easily transferable. Finish cooling on a wire rack.
7. Once cooled, enjoy with a glass of ice-cold milk or even crumbled over a few scoops of your favourite ice-cream! ENJOY!
- I didn’t really take into consideration the fact that I was doubling the recipe AND making smaller cookies, so I was a little overwhelmed when I had to keep scooping and rotating pans to use all of the dough. I think we ended up with somewhere between 3-4 dozen cookies. Andy’s coworkers kindly took care of them for us, but man, that was a lot of cookies.
- The cooking time was a bit hit and miss, but by the time we were done we realized that -at least in our oven- 7 minutes produced soft, gooey cookies and 9 minutes produced a crisper cookie, but it was still plenty chewy from all of the chips.
- Flavor-wise, these were pretty great. A nice rich, gooey cookie loaded with chocolate chips and just a hint of that citrus-y tang to cut all the sweet. I limited myself to two and a half cookies (it broke; what was I to do?), but I could have eaten so many more. I loved them; Andy loved them; Andy’s coworkers loved them. You should make them – I’m 99% certain you’ll love them, too.
For those of you who don’t know, every year I put together a “birthday week” for my husband. 7 days worth of gifts and small surprises that end in the big day itself. I started birthday week the first year Andy and I were dating, and ever since then, Andy has been adamant that he has to have one every year. In keeping with the spirit of birthday week, this week I decided to try out this recipe for Biscoff Brownies. Andy LOVES Biscoff cookies, and I suspect we fly Delta so often because they are the standard snack provided. So buying the cookie butter and baking something non-cookie based with it seemed like the logical next step.
- 3/4 cup salted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup Biscoff Spread, melted
- Preheat over to 350 degrees.
- Line a square 8×8 or 9×9 baking pan with parchment paper or give it a coating of baking spray.
- Melt the butter on the stove top in a sauce pan or in the microwave. Whisk in sugar and cocoa powder, and then stir in vanilla extract.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the eggs well, and then whisk in the chocolate mixture until well combined. Stir the flour into the chocolate mixture until just combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Melt Biscoff Spread in the microwave and drizzle over the top of the brownie batter. Use a clean butter knife to swirl the Biscoff Spread into the batter.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Cool on a wire cooling rack for at least 30 minutes before serving.
- These brownies were a definite win. The brownie recipe itself was solid and produced rich dense chocolaty goodness. The Biscoff swirl was just an added bonus.
- Swirl-wise I think I “marbled” the top of my brownies too much; you still got a hint of Biscoff when you took a bite, but bigger swirls would have allowed for a nice punch of that caramel-y cinnamon flavor that we all love.
- The only downside to these brownies is trying to take them out of the pan. You have to be really careful or they’ll break apart when you tip them out. Mine broke into four uneven hunks that I squared off and cut into individual serving sizes. Not a big disaster but it bothered me a bit they were all oddly shaped.
You guys, I am pretty sure this might be it, The Chocolate Cookie, all in caps, straight up. THE. CHOCOLATE. COOKIE. This is not one of the hey-let-me-just-grab-a-quick-snack cookies, it’s a I-just-broke-up-with-my-boyfriend-had-a-horrible-day-at-the-office-and-I-broke-the-heel-of-my-favorite-pair-of-shoes cookie. I firmly believe that, with the proper pairing of milk and Netflix, this cookie could heal your soul… and make you glad you bought those insanely comfy stretchy pants. The official title of these decadent wonders is Soft Batch Double Chocolate Fudge Cookies, and I found them on the blog Baker by Nature. Here we go:
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons whole milk
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup milk chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees (F). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper, lightly spray them with non-stick spray, and set aside.
- Place the semi-sweet chocolate chips and butter in a small, microwave safe bowl. Heat them in the microwave for for 15 second increments of time, mixing in between each, until butter and chocolate are completely melted and can easily be whisked smooth. Set aside. * You may also do this process on the stove top if you don’t own a microwave.
- In a medium-sized bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In a separate medium-sized bowl whisk together the sugars, eggs, milk, and vanilla.
- Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, and stir to combine – be sure not to over mix here!
- Fold in the chocolate/ butter mixture and the milk chocolate chips into the batter, stirring until everything is just combined.
- Scoop 1/4 cupfuls of the batter on the prepared baking sheets, place pans in the oven, reduce heat to 300 degrees, and bake for 18-20 minutes. Allow cookies to completely cool on the baking sheet before serving.
- Do not over bake these cookies; stick to that 18-20 minute bake time like it is written in stone. They are going to seem to soft, but trust me, they aren’t.
- Let the cookies completely cool before you try to move them; they have a cup of melted chocolate in them, and they will fall apart if you try to transfer them while they are still hot. I put my cookies sheet on the counter, set a timer, and walked away for 45 minutes so I wouldn’t be tempted to mess with them.
- I used silicone baking mats instead of parchment paper; they serve the same purpose, and I feel like the results are more consistent… at least in my experience.
- Everyone, and I do mean everyone, who has tried these thinks that they are incredible. I have already had three of my taste testers ask me to make another batch.
As I mentioned on Friday, I allow myself two cheat meals a week, and as long as I keep it reasonable, I let myself have dessert as well. This weekend I really, really, really wanted a chocolate chip cookie, and I fully intended on making my own, but then I started to doubt my skills. I’ve made plenty of chocolate chip cookies over the year, but I wanted to go gluten free, and I’ve never made anything gluten free from scratch. I even found a super simple recipe on Audrey’s Apron, but I chickened out when I saw the words “xantham gum” (which I have since learned is not scary at all). Summation, I went to Whole Foods and came home with three boxes of GF Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix, and yes, I baked them all. Andy and I had an impromptu taste test, sampling one of each last night, and then boxed up the leftovers and sent to Andy’s co-workers. Here are the Bucior household results:
These cookies were very thick, but they bake up more cake-like than cookie like. The flavor was just okay, kind of like cardboard with sad chocolate chips. I believe the term “beige” was thrown around. The batter was even meh, after trying a bit I made Andy eat a cookie before I’d agree to try them. He ended up with the other half of my cookie. Verdict: Last place from Andy and Me. I’d never eat them again, but he said he would.
I really wanted these to be the best cookies. I’ve had the premade vegan Ginny Bakes cookies before, and they were crazy good. These were the ugliest cookies of the bunch, and they didn’t bake up much at all. I liked that the dough itself had a noticeable salt tang to it. I think the best desserts have a good balance between salty and sweet, but Andy felt like the salt was a drawback. The texture was nice and chewy, but they did fall apart a bit while we were eating them. Verdict: We both gave these a solid second place, and we would absolutely make them again. *Note: Next time I will go for bigger cookies and just up the bake time.
I really like the Immaculate Baking brand. They have great cookies, cinnamon rolls, scones, pretty much everything I’ve ever tried by them has been delicious. So no surprise, these cookies were the best. They looked the best; they tasted the best; even the consistency was the best. Were they not a little grainy on the finish, no one would even know they were GF. Verdict: I had an extra one of these to make up for the half an Organics cookie I refused to eat. Best out of the three across the board for both Andy and myself. I might even make them again next weekend.
For those of you who don’t know, though I currently do data entry and minor bookkeeping at a CPA office, I actually have a degree in apparel design. When I was college, my friends would pull these crazy late night project parties, spread out all across the lab sketching, patterning, cutting and sewing our garments. Sometimes we’d crank someone’s ipod, and there would lots of joking around while we helped each other out, and sometimes we’d hit the “zone” where we’d all get quiet and intensely focused on our work, and hours would pass – strange, seemingly magical hours that resulted in a tangible manifestation of something that was once only a fuzzy idea. I loved it and some times I really miss it. What does this have to do with decorating cookies? Andy sent me an article about cookies that were “so beautifully decorated that it would be wrong to eat them”. Watching these tutorials by sweetambs I marveled at her steady hands and methodical precision; she was in the zone.
Amazing right? All that for a single cookie. Mad props, but could you imagine making a dozen?