© Constantine William Spyrou
The winter holiday break has to be one of my favorite times of the year. I can relax from the stress of finals, catch up with my friends from home, and really let the creative juices flow for making new dishes and recipe ideas in my kitchen at home. It's a time of joy, wonder, peace, love, and fun! One of the best things about the holidays, though, has to be the winter baking. From cookies to cakes and everything delicious and sugary between, the holidays just call for warming and comforting desserts that take you back to being a kid.
This is my take on those desserts - a double chocolate chip cookie with a holiday twist. First off, I'm using my own special recipe for cookie that I developed in high school. These cookies have a nice and crisp bottom, but are soft, light, and fluffy inside. My best friend Ashley has dubbed these "Scookies" because they're kind of like a mix between a scone and a cookie. The secret is changing up the basic cookie recipe by adding some milk to lighten up the batter as well as utilizing cake flour instead of all-purpose flour to make a much more fluffy inside. Spiked with spices like cinnamon and cardamom, these will be a pleasant treat for friends and guests on your table during the holiday season.
Recipe makes about 4 dozen cookies.
3 1/2 cups cake flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
2 pinches of salt
1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
1/2 cup skim milk
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon nutmeg
2 teaspoons ground cardamom
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 16-oz package semisweet chocolate chips
For the Topping:
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1. Cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar with a mixer for about 10 minutes or until the mixture rises in size and lightens up significantly in color. You should start on a lower speed then increase the speed as the butter and sugar combine.
2. Add in your milk, eggs, cocoa powder, and spices to the butter and sugar and combine well.
3. Sift together your flour, baking powder, and salt so there's no lumps left and the three are evenly mixed. With your mixer on a low speed, add the mixture in about a third at a time so it can evenly mix well. Repeat until all of the flour is fully incorporated into your cookie dough.
4. Let the cookie dough chill in your fridge for at least 2-3 hours if you plan on making them the same day. You can make this dough the night before and freeze it, then take it out about 30 minutes before baking to let it thaw out.
5. Once the dough is chilled, out of the fridge/freezer, and ready to go, preheat your oven to 395 degrees F. Scoop out your cookies onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper (or cooking spray). The mound should be no more than half an inch wide and a quarter inch high. Take a sheet of parchment paper and press your cookies down lightly to help them achieve a wider shape.
6. Bake your cookies for 1 minute at 395 degrees, then immediately lower the temperature to 375 degrees F for 10 minutes. Raise the temperature to 385 for another two minutes, then take the cookies out. Make sure to switch pans around in the oven if using multiple pans. Changing up the cooking times like this allows the cookies to spread slightly as well as crisp up on the bottom, cook, and then get a more brown color over the top over the final two minutes.
7. As your cookies bake, combine together the cinnamon and sugar in a bowl or cup of some sort. Once the cookies come out of the oven, sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar mixture. They will melt into the cookie, but also add texture.
8. Let your cookies cool, then serve!
Changing up temperatures is a great way to achieve more texture and go for the exact kind of cookie you like. You can change up this recipe however you like to make the cookies your desirable texture. If you like wide cookies with a lot of crunch, use baking soda and take out the milk, for example. These will be delicious no matter what way you cook them!
I hope you enjoyed this recipe! Let me know what you think and what you would change. If you make it at home, let me know how it turns out! Enjoy! =)