|Ready for posting|
In third place in the taste test were Dan Lepard's Ginger and Macadamia Cookies. I had my heart set on using these for my exchange cookies, but there were mixed reviews from my co-workers. Ginger is a bit of a Marmite flavour which divided opinion. There was a complaint that they were too thin - they're chewy cookies so they spread a lot on cooking - and one person ate two together, thinking they were thicker than they were. I then saved some of the dough to bake a few days later and managed to burn this batch so eventually decided not to risk attempting to bake thirty-six of them.
|Freshly baked and drizzled|
And the winning cookie? Well originally, I was going to bake Nigella's Chocolate Mint Cookies as I liked the idea that they could be an alternative to After Eight's. I had several half-used pots of chocolate chips in my cupboard so was merrily tipping them all into my bowl when I realised I'd mixed one of the half-empty pots with a load of left over dried cherries the week before when I'd been making my Chocolate and Cherry Bagels. Luckily I'd not added the peppermint essence first.
As I had made all three batches of cookies on the one day, I'd also managed to run out of plain flour at this point so threw in a bit of pasta flour for good measure. I think this made for a nice, soft cookie because when I made them with all plain flour for the actual Cookie Swap, they were a little crisper (although it might have been to do with me and my timings!)
Anyway, the cookies went down a storm at work in the taste test and when I took the leftovers from the ones I made for the swap in to work, there was a small scuffle as people rooted through the box seeking out the chocolate and cherry ones.
So here is the recipe, adapted Nigella's original recipe.
For the cookies
- 150 grams butter (soft)
- 225 grams light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 2 medium eggs
- 150 grams plain flour
- 75g 00 (pasta) flour
- 55 grams cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 200 gram dark chocolate chips (I use Waitrose ones)
- 100g dried sour cherries
- 75g white chocolate, melted
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4. Lightly grease two baking trays with spray oil.
- Cream the butter and sugar. Beat the eggs together with the vanilla bean paste then combine with the butter and sugar.
- Mix the flours, cocoa and baking powder in a bowl and gradually beat in to the creamed mixture. Fold in the chocolate chips and cherries.
- Scoop out walnut sized balls of mixture and space evenly across the baking trays. You will probably need to bake in two batches.
- Bake in the oven for 12 minutes and then let them sit on the baking sheet for a couple of minutes before moving them to a cooling rack.
- Once cold, drizzle with the melted white chocolate.