Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Hunky Chunky Cookies And Halloween Fun

Halloween decorations have crept up (literally) in my neighborhood over the past week. Our orange and purple lights are hanging on the palm tree, finally. Better late than never. The one thing that we did have out in time, our carved pumpkins, didn't survive to see the Halloween day though. Husband was quite methodical in his approach - he bought a pumpkin carving stencil book and all the fancy tools for carving. He even made a chlorine solution to prevent pumpkins from rotting. Unfortunately, the solution dried out the pumpkin a bit too much, shriveling and cracking through some of the design. The mold didn't seem to care about chlorine either. Anyhow, our haunted house and headless man managed to spook others for almost a week.

I picked up a Halloween special magazine while waiting at the grocery check-out counter a couple of weeks back - yes, I can shop all the way to the check-out line :D. I promptly tried one of the appetizers - Potatoes stuffed with herb & garlic cheese. Tell me how you can go wrong with cheese and potatoes! I am planning to make them again for my office Halloween potluck. Recipe should follow soon.

Now, what's Halloween without some lots of chocolate? Another recipe I tried for chocolate chip cookies, with a couple of modifications, was a winner! I made a fresh batch for my friends on Sunday, and also shared some with my colleagues yesterday. Everyone was all praises for the cookies, genuinely :D. The original recipe used a combination of milk, bittersweet, and white chocolate chips. I went with what was available in the pantry - bittersweet chips only. We're bigger fans of dark chocolate anyway. The cookies came out nice and big - the kind that make kids happy. So I called them Hunky Chunky cookies!

**Note: This recipe makes about 22-24 cookies

Hunky Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookies

Wet Ingredients:
1 Cup unsalted butter
2 Cups sugar (all white or half brown and half white)
1 Extra large egg
1 Teaspoon vanilla extract

Dry Ingredients:
1 Cup APF
3/4 Cup whole wheat flour
1/2 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 Tsp baking powder
1 Tsp salt
1 Cup bittersweet chocolate chips

Prep: Line two baking sheets with parchment paper/aluminum file. Preheat oven to 350F.

  • In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar with until smooth.
  • Beat in egg until the mixture if fluffy. Stir in vanilla extract.
  • In a separate bowl, sift all the dry ingredients except chocolate chips. Beat the flour into the butter-sugar mixture slowly, and fold in the chocolate chips.
  • Drop big spoonfuls of the batter on the lined sheets. I used a small ice-cream scoop to ensure the same size. Each drop was approximately the size of a golf ball.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes. Then let the cookies cool on a rack.

I kept one of the baking sheets right at the center of the oven, and the other closer to the bottom. The center sheet cookies turned perfectly chewy. The bottom ones were more on the crispy side. Still delicious, but I wouldn't put the sheet right by the heating coils. I would like to add macadamia nuts next time - that'll make these cookies just perrrfect!

Hope you have a spooktacular, sugar-filled Halloween!!!

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