Well, it’s that time of year again. The Holidays are upon us and that means the that food bloggers from all over are dutifully making donations, and baking and shipping secret packages of cookies to one another. This is my second year participating in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap and it was just as fun this year as last. Again, a big thank you to the folks at Love & Olive Oil and The Little Kitchen for coordinating such an awesome swap and keeping all the moving parts in motion. What a feat!
Now let’s get down to the cookies …
Much like last year, I really wracked my brain for the right cookie. In the end I went classic, with a twist: chocolate Gingerbread Crackles – because everyone loves gingerbread, but not the dry, cardboardish little men with the hard icing buttons and spooky candy eyes. I mean tender, spicy, Christmas scented ginger bread, the kind that’s so good that you’ll make a second cup of tea, just so you can keep dunking.
And chocolate – another favourite – also classically Christmas. But what happens when those two yuletide favorites come together into little balls, rolled in sugar and baked until perfect? A crackled, crunchy crust that gives way to a meltingly tender chocolate cookie that tastes like Christmastime. Thank me later, after you bake them yourself. Sorry, I’d share, but these ones are long gone.
My cookie colleagues have been just as busy, and I can’t wait to receive my cookies from some new blogging friends and see what delicious recipes they have to share. If your cookie appetite has been sparked, or you’re looking for more great cookie recipes to share or take to your own cookie swap, check out last year’s Food Blogger Cookie Swap round up here and here for dozens and dozens of treats.
Chocolate Gingerbread Crackles
½ Cup butter, room temperature
½ Cup golden brown sugar
1 Cup semi sweet chocolate chips
¼ Cup boiling water
2 Cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp fresh grated nutmeg
½ ground allspice
¼ Cup cocoa
½ tsp salt
Sift together all the dry ingredients, set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the butter and brown sugar on low speed until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and mix well until fully combined.
In a bowl or large measuring cup, pour the boiling water over the chocolate chips and stir until blended and smooth, about 1 minute. Scrape the chocolate into the butter/sugar/egg mixture. Mix on medium speed until fully combined.
With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients a half a cup at a time, allowing the last scoop to be fully incorporated before adding the next one. Continue until all the dry ingredients have been incorporated. Continue to mix until the dough is soft and cohesive, about 1 more minute.
Scrape the dough onto a large piece of cling wrap and flatten into a disk, about 1 inch thick. Chill the disk of dough for at least an hour. When you’re ready to bake, roll the dough into pin pong ball sized balls between your palms. Roll the balls of cookie dough in
¼ Cup white sugar
Place the balls on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, about 2″ apart from one another.
Bake at 325° for 16 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Makes 24 cookies