Wednesday, January 4, 2012

.hot cocoa cookies, hot off the presses.

oh baby, it's cold outside. i want you to close your eyes and imagine the following scenario. wait, open your eyes and read it first and then close your eyes for just half a second and picture it. here we go...there's frost on the window outside, you have a wintery cranberry candle wafting a lovely aroma throughout your home, you are curled up on the sofa with the crackling of a fire tickling your eardrums (or a tv if you prefer it) and in your hand rests a warm mug of hot chocolate or even coffee. you have no chores awaiting, deadlines looming or little people calling your name. go ahead, close your eyes now.

you back? i want you to imagine that peaceful scenario and then add to it a most delicious hot cocoa cookie (or 8). bliss, pure and simple. if that kinda soothing scenario just isn't possible for you, then picture wiping snot off your kid, running late to work with half filled ziploc baggies of leftovers and grabbing one of these cookies on the way out. either way you eat them, they're oh so very good. just ask my mother-in-law and sister-in-law. they'll vouch for me.

let me let you in on a little secret. these chocolatey sweeties are easy to make. first, get your cast of characters gathered together and this includes 4 packets of hot cocoa. don't buy the sugar free or reduced fat variety. let's not kid ourselves here- if you're going to make cookies, just go for what tastes best.

cream together your sugars and butter in a standing mixer. add in the eggs and vanilla. then, in a separate bowl whisk the dry ingredients. with your mixer on low, slowly add in your dry ingredients. pause every so often to scrape down the side of the bowl and mixer paddle. preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

at this point, you have a chocolatey mass of batter. whatever you do, don't dip your finger in for a taste. seriously, don't do it. the previous statement has no validity and if you have no fear of sal manila like me, be a rebel and do it. i hope my mother isn't reading this paragraph. mix in all three of your varying chocolate chips. they really are so pretty mingling together with their shades of deliciousness.

while i am sure you'll be anxious to bake up your goodness at this point, put your whole bowl of batter in the refrigerator to harden for an hour if you can stand it. it isn't the end of the world to bake right away, but the cold air makes the ingredients really stick together. that's a scientific unfact. when you'r ready, take a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon and plop rounds onto a parchment lined or sprayed baking sheet. smoosh them a little flatter with the palm of your hand before putting them in the oven. bake your cookies in batches by the dozen until you've used up all the dough.

i was able to make almost 4 dozen irresistible cookies with this recipe. each one bursting with white, semi-sweet and milk chocolate. the subtle hint of hot cocoa takes you to a warm place you never want to leave. but you must. you must walk away from that plate of cookies or you'll ending up eating them all. well, would that be in the world?

hot cocoa cookies
thanks to baked bree for this super cookie recipe below
2 sticks room temperature butter
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/4 cups flour
4 packages Hot Chocolate Mix (not sugar free)
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup each white, milk, and semi-sweet chocolate chips
Cream together both sugars and the butter until light and fluffy.
In another bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.
Mix in the eggs and vanilla.
Slowly add in the dry ingredients. I did this in stages, scraping the bowl each time.
Gorgeous. I love the way chips look. They are so cute.
Add the chocolate chips to the cookie dough. This part gave my Kitchen-Aid a bit of a workout. The recipe says to chill the dough for an hour. Oops. I forgot to do that. They were still wonderful.
Drop onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. I used my favorite tool for the job. My trusty ice cream scooper.
Bake them in a preheated 350 degree oven for 9 to 11 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before removing from the pan.

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