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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Chewy Chocolate Cookies

With the holidays and baking season upon us, these cookies are amazing just to have on hand and they package up beautifully for an easy, delicious last-minute gift, should you need one.  

Hershey's cocoa powder (unsweetened) works fine here if you don't have any dutch-processed cocoa powder on hand.  Use an ice cream scoop to scoop out the dough and roll into a ball in your palm, then drop into a sanding sugar..  Easy and the cookies come out very round and uniform. Meaning, perty! .. so don't forget to mention they are homemade to get some well-due credit!

(adapted from Martha Stewart Cookies)

Chewy Chocolate Cookies  

2 cups + 2 T. all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1¼ cups (2½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
sanding sugar (I used organic sugar) for rolling

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside: flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs and vanilla until combined, then reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add in the flour mixture until just combined.

Form the dough into a disk and wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about an hour.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Scoop the dough into 1¼ inch balls, drop and roll each ball in the sanding sugar.   I used an organic sugar which is slightly brown-hued..  the sugar comes out sparkling in the end.  Raw sugar would work well here, also.  
Place (with room to spread) on a cookie sheet lined with silpat or parchment paper. 

Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are set. They will still look a bit gooey when removed from the oven. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes then remove from the cookie sheet and cool completely.

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