Monday, April 26, 2010

Chewy Chocolate Cherry Cayenne Cookies

Taken from here.

Picture 106

* 1/4 cup flour
* 1/4 tsp baking powder
* 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
* 8 oz (1 1/3 cups) bittersweet chocolate chips or squares, 63 % to 70% cacao
* 4 Tbs butter, unsalted
* 2 Tbs brewed espresso (I used espresso powder dissolved in boiling water)
* 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
* 1 tsp cayenne powder
* 2 large eggs
* 2/3 cup sugar
* 1/2 cup dried cherries
* 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
* 1/4 cup chopped pecans


Preheat oven 375°. (Note: I usually preheat my oven to 25 degrees lower than what recipes say, because it runs about 10 degrees hot and also I use nonstick bakeware. So I actually baked these at 350.)

In a small bowl combine flour, baking powder, and sea salt. Set aside.

In a double boiler or pot of simmering (not boiling) water with a heat-safe bowl set on top as shown, melt the bittersweet chocolate and butter. When melted, turn off heat and add espresso, vanilla and cayenne. Stir. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

In a large bowl or standing electric mixer (if you have one use it, I don’t and this saddens me but at least I get a workout) beat the eggs with an electric mixer on high just until frothy about 2 minutes. Slowly add sugar and beat on high until egg and sugar mixture is thick, about 13 more minutes. (Note: I ended up beating the egg and sugar mixture for about 14-15 minutes.)

Gently fold using a spoon or spatula cooled chocolate mixture into egg and sugar mixture. Fold until partially combined. Add flour and carefully fold again until partially combined. Next add the dried cherries, semi-sweet chocolate chips and pecans. Fold until everything is just mixed. Be careful not to over mix and deflate the eggs. If the mixture is a little runny, chill in refrigerator for 5 to 10 minutes.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place small spoonfuls of cookie batter (I used a small cookie scoop that's about 3/4 of a tablespoon) onto baking sheet. Leave about 2 inches between each cookie (I put 8 cookies on each baking sheet).

Set in oven and bake for 9 minutes. Oven times do vary. What you are looking for is a shiny brownie-like crust.

When finished, cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Then remove from the baking sheet and place on a cooling rack.

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