As the season changes and the weather gets cooler, I start to dream of a nice cup of ultra-rich hot chocolate, and I’m not talking about “Swiss Miss” over here. I’m talking about that kind of hot chocolate that is so creamy and so thick where 3 ounces of it is enough to give you that ultimate chocolate fix. Such was my delirium that I ended up buying 7 lbs of baking chocolate from the premiere chocaholic’s store “For the Love of Chocolate “ in Carytown. I will be adding to this post all through the month of October as I will declare it my “All things chocolate” month. Hubby is begging me not to bake too many desserts since a) He is not a dessert person and b) He will have to work out harder in the gym but c) He does love dark chocolate so d) He is in a turmoil. So to satisfy his plea I will bake a crème caramel in between which I’m pretty sure he is not going to eat. I do have to work my way through 7 pounds of chocolate; hopefully I don’t gain 7 lbs as a result. I do have a couple of more pounds of chocolate that my friend J (I think she said it was Mexican chocolate) want to split with me so…
A Pound of Chocolate
More like 14 ounces actually. I’m looking for the ultimate fudge cookie. I have never baked cookies before except for one disastrous oatmeal cookie baking, so I am nowhere an authority on cookie dough. This recipe is from “Bittersweet” by Alice Medrich. I often get asked what kind of chocolate I use. I rarely use chocolate powder or pre-packaged mixes because I rarely get the true chocolate flavor I am after. So I use Valhorna or Callebaut exclusively now. I am experimenting with mixing 70% Valhorna and 60% Callebaut. For this recipe , I discourage going the easy route and buying chocolate chips, it would be better to chop your own chunks yourself and pick a chocolate that contrasts in sweetness with the chocolate in the batter. Chunks should be between 1/4 to 1/2 inch cube. Fine shards that occur during chunking are best used for melting with the chocolate dough rather than folding into the dough since they would likely just melt into the warm dough when stirred.
8 oz bittersweet chocolate chopped into chunks for melting
6 oz semisweet chocolate chopped into chunks (1/4 to 1/2 inch cubes)
2 cups pecans broken into large chunks
2 tbs unsalted butter
1/8 tsp sea salt
¼ cup Flour
½ cup sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 Large eggs
1 tsp baking powder
- Preheat oven to 350 F
- Mix the flour, baking powder and salt. Sift and set aside.
- Melt the 8 oz BSW chocolate with the butter over a low simmer or baine marie on a large heat proof bowl.
- In another heat-proof bowl whisk eggs, sugar and vanilla until combined.
- Stir egg mixture into warm (not hot) chocolate mixture. Stir in flour mixture, followed by pecans and chocolate chunks. (The batter should look like a brownie mixture)
- Scoop slightly heaped tablespoons of batter onto the prepared cookie sheet 1.5 inches apart and bake until surface is dry, set and glossy, but the center is still gooey – about 12 to 14 minutes. Let cookies firm up on a baking sheet for a minute before transferring them to a rack to cool completely. (Actually, you should try them warm out of the oven, there’s nothing more comforting than ultra chocolaty cookies).
Yields around 36 cookies.