Thursday, January 20, 2011

Don't Be Alarmed By The Screeching ~ It's Just Chocolate

Okay, I'm going to grab the steering wheel and take a sharp, hard right turn.  The tires will screech.  The car will probably ride up onto 2 wheels going around this corner.  But sometimes that's the best way.  Oddly, though not really oddly for me, the two streets are more of a straightaway now that I think about it.  They are connected.

When I'm happy, I like to bake.  And eat.  And when I'm tired, I like to bake.  And eat.  And when I'm stressed, I like to bake.  And eat.  And when I'm sad?  I like to bake.  And eat.

I'm a consistent girl.  Order, order.

So as I was going about my day Tuesday, one of the things that I thought may just help the sadness was some chocolate.  Both the preparation of and eating of some good chocolate.  It just seemed right.  I wanted my house to smell good.  I wanted to beat something with my beaters.  And I wanted to dunk something in cold milk.

So I got a curiosity stuck in my head that would not leave, and I had to follow through.  I started thinking about really good sugar cookies.  This is my sister's recipe, my favorite sugar cookie.  The tricky thing about these cookies is they just don't fill you up.  Speaking from experience, you can eat a few before realizing you've eaten a few.

So my curiosity?  Could I make those into CHOCOLATE sugar cookies???  This was a risky move, because I was in no mood to be disappointed.  It could have caused a meltdown that would have put any two-year old to shame.

However, it turned out to be an experiment that now is one of my very, very favorite cookies.  It MINISTERED to me.  Okay, maybe that's extreme.  But at a minimum, it ministered to my mouth and tummy.  And nose.  And hands.  And eyes.  You know, ME.  I am the sum of my parts.

So I must share the recipe with you.  Trust me when I say that your house will smell so good that when someone pulls into your driveway and approaches the front door, they will smell them.  In a good way.

They are great dunked in hot coffee or cold milk.  They are even great undunked.  They would be great with a little espresso powder mixed in, I may try that next time.  Or with a little chocolate/espresso icing.  Mmm.

Enticed?  Give 'em a go:

Screeching Melt-In-Your-Mouth Chocolate Sugar Cookies

1 cup butter
1 cup oil
1 cup powdered sugar
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup Hershey's Special Dark Baking Cocoa
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
4 cups flour

Beat together softened butter, oil and sugars.  Add cocoa and mix well.  Add eggs and vanilla and beat it well.  Therapy.  Add tartar, baking powder and salt, mix until combined.  Add flour, one cup at a time, and mix just until combined.  Dough will be very stiff.

Drop by heaping cookie scoop full onto parchment-lined baking sheet, I do just 8 per sheet.  Personal space, you know.  Dip a flat-bottomed glass into sugar and then press cookie balls down to about 1/2 inch or slightly less. 

Bake at 400 for 9 minutes.  (these are so dark they are hard to tell if they are done.  Do your first batch at 9 minutes and use them as a test run, making adjustments for your oven.  Then trust the timer.

"Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him."  Psalm 34:8

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