Monday, January 14, 2013

Chocolate Roll-Out Cookies {Recipe}

I'm a big fan of good, old Vanilla Cut-Out Cookies.
But, living in a chocolate-crazy family, I am reminded that not everyone is happy if their treats are any color other than dark brown!

What You Need:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter (at room temperature)
1 cup sugar
4 oz. melted chocolate*
1 large or extra large egg (at room temperature)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. white vinegar

*I recommend semisweet or milk chocolate (depending on your taste). When I used unsweetened chocolate, the cookies tasted a little bitter to me, although some of my taste-testers thought they were good. I liked the less-bitter variety best.

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and the sugar until it's well-mixed and fluffy.
Melt the chocolate in the microwave. (I use 30% power, starting at about 3 minutes.)
Add the melted chocolate to the butter mixture. Mix until completely combined.

Add the egg, vanilla and vinegar. Mix well again.

Slowly add the flour mixture, and mix on the lowest speed until all of the flour is incorporated. (Try not to overmix. The cookies are the most flaky and tender if you mix them as little as possible.)

Turn the dough out onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Knead gently until it's all in one piece of dough. (Again, try to work it as little as possible.)
*And yes, I know this photo is less-than-appetizing... however, I wanted to show that it isn't all one piece when it comes out of the mixer at this step.

Shape the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes to an hour.

On a floured piece of parchment paper, roll the dough out to about 1/4" thick (about the thickness of a pencil).

For best results, you want to cover and refrigerate this dough again for about an hour. This allows the cookies to set up even better, and spread even less. If you want to skip the second refrigeration, you can, but the dough is really soft, so I find that my shapes break a lot easier when I'm trying to transfer them from paper to baking pan.

When you are ready to bake them, remove the rolled dough from the refrigerator and preheat the oven to 350-degrees (F). Cut out your shapes, and place them an inch or so apart on a cookie sheet. (I use parchment paper on all of my cookie sheets to help keep them from sticking at all.)

Do Not Skip This Step!
Place your tray of cut-out cookies into the freezer for 10-15 minutes BEFORE placing them in the oven. This is what really seals the deal to keep them from spreading too much.

Bake the cookies at 350 for 8-10 minutes. With these, aim to underbake them at first, because they're so dark, you can't tell when they start to get too crisp, and if they're too crisp, they are probably a little overbaked.
Remove the cookies to a cooling rack.

You can then decorate them with royal icing...

Use them as sandwich cookies with some yummy icing...

Or eat them as-is with a big glass of milk.


Click the Links Below to See:
Vanilla Sugar Cookie Recipe
Other Chocolate Recipes
Other Cookie Recipes & Ideas

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