The idea was to make quick chocolate cookies from one of my recipe books; the choice fell on “how to be a domestic Goddess” by Nigella Lawson the great cake maker. I found a recipe that involved less than 5 ingredients, took 30 minutes to make including the baking, and less than 10 minutes to eat!
I then figured that such a recipe could be amended a bit, which is where my Leelou creative instinct gets a kick! what if I substituted the cocoa with a totally different flavor? I couldn’t go that wrong, especially that the base was proven to be good.
So here is the original recipe from Nigella Lawson, and next my adaptation;
2 cups self rising flour (if you have normal flour, then add 1 tsp Baking powder)
2 Tablespoon Cocoa powder
1 cup + 2 tbsp soft butter
7 tbsp sugar
a pinch of salt (I added this to give it an extra punch!)
Heat the oven at 200 degrees Celsius.
Mix flour, cocoa & salt together and set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar (either with a mixer, or the old fashion way; by cutting the butter in tiny bits in the sugar, then working it with a wooden spoon until it gets creamy ) add the flour mix to it and work the dough into a ball. Make small balls out of the dough (walnut size) and place on a baking sheet. Then with the back of a fork press down the balls a bit; it will give them a flatter look and stripy design once baked.
Bake for 10-15 minutes. Cocoa cookies become very dark, and it can sometimes be difficult to see if they are done;that is why I always take one out of the oven, let it rest for a minute on a cold surface and taste the consistency before removing the rest of the cookies. Place the cookies on a cold surface to cool down before indulging them!
Keep in an air tight container (preferably metal box; it keeps them crunchy).
Lemon and ginger version:
Substitute the cocoa powder with zest of a whole lemon and 2 cm grated fresh ginger.
If you do not find fresh ginger, use dry ginger instead; 1 tsp will do. Follow the recipe as above.
I am sure those of you who are venturous would like to try this recipe with other flavors; cinnamon spices, licorice, coffee are among interesting ones. The base of the recipe is so easy, even a child can make it. Try to be bold and let me know how it turns out!
This season is all about cooking and baking for me.. Today my son needed to prepare something for his last day of school before the Christmas Holidays, and we agreed to bake something instead of buying sweets. As my table is filled with cook books these days, I grabbed the nearest and started browsing, and found this delicious and easy recipe for chocolate cookies. The house is now smelling as a chocolate factory and they are yummy!
225 g soft butter (or 1 cup)
140 g sugar (or 1 cup)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg yolk
225 g flour (or 2 cups)
55 g cocoa (or 4 big Tbsp)
Pinch of salt
Mix butter and sugar well with a wood spoon, then add the egg yolk & vanilla extract and beat well with an electrical mixer. Sift the flour with cocoa and salt and add to the butter mixture and stir well.
Make a ball out of the dough and let it rest in the fridge, wrapped in cling film, for at least 1 hour.
Preheat the oven, 190 degrees, use baking paper on a large baking tray. Unwrap the cookie dough, place it between two baking sheets and roll out, to about 5mm thick. If the dough is a bit sticky, add some flour on your hands and sprinkle unto the dough.
Use a glass and stick out approx. 30 cookies. Bake in the oven (high level so they don’t burn) for 8-10 minutes.
Let them cool on a rack then place in a tin box.
You can also ice them with melted white chocolate and sprinkle them with chocolate sprinkles!
Eat and Enjoy the wonderful chocolate smell in the house for the rest of the day!
So, 13 days to Christmas, and the baking is ongoing in my house! Don’t you just love the smells of cinammon and orange when you enter a home?
In Denmark (my second home country), we bake non-stop during the month of December and it is such a delight to do it with friends over a cup of hot cocoa or even a glass of warm Glogg (hot red wine filled with spices!!). Would you like to experiment in some of our danish delights? Here is an easy one; the cookies should be heart shaped and can be used as decoration on the Christmas Tree, then eaten!
this recipe makes approx. 50 pieces, depending on the size of your heart!
435 g Honey (1 1/3 cup)
100 g butter (1/2 cup)
200 g dark sugar (1 1/3 cup)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1tsp all spice
700 g flour (5 1/3 cup)
1 tsp baking soda
Melt honey, sugar and butter over low fire then remove from heat. Let it cool down for 10 minutes. Mix all dry ingredients (spices and flour) and then add to the cooled butter mix, either by mixer or by hand. Blend well. Let the dough rest for 1 hour, then roll out on a table (with some extra flour) until it is ½ cm thick (you can make it even thinner, it is more delicious). Use heart shaped forms (or any form you like!) and cut out 50 pcs. Place on a baking sheet in a pre-heated oven (180 degrees Celsius – 392 F) and bake for 10 minutes. Only 5 minutes for thin cookies.
Cool down the cookies and decorate with white powder sugar mixed with a bit of water (let it be liquid).
Would you like more inspiration from Christmas cooking? Let me know…