From the blog smittenkitchen.com. I was dying to find a simple roll outchocolate cookie dough that was different from my chocolate freckle mix so that I could try out my new Ikea animal cutters and I found something that was just perfect. Who doesn’t want squirrel cookies?
3 cups plain flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ cups caster sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
Preheat the oven to 170’C. Whisk flour, salt and baking powder in a bowl and set aside. Mix butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla and cocoa in an electric mixer. Gradually add flour mix and combine until smooth. Wrap in glad wrap and chill in the fridge for an hour. Roll out cookie dough on floured surface or between 2 sheets of baking paper. Cut out into desired shapes. Bake on trays lined with baking paper for 8 to 11 minutes depending on the thickness of your rolled out dough, until the edges are firm and the centre slightly soft and puffy. Cool on a wire rack.
Such an easy recipe with great results that pleased the masses I am glad to say. I initially made a batch of squirrels, snails and moose for Daniel and I, after waiting for the dough to come together and washing up I had had enough of standing in the kitchen and rolling out dough so I used about a quarter and put the rest in the fridge. I rolled out the rest on Friday night, making more squirrels and a few moose for Daniel as he liked these the best. With the rest of the dough I decided to cut out circles (with an espresso cup because I don’t have round cutters) and bake them then decorate them with white chocolate ganache Mercedes-Benz star emblems. I gave these away at a barbeque that was held at work the next day and I am pleased to announce that everyone loved them.
The hardest part of this recipe is resisting adding any liquid while waiting for the dough to come together. I really thought it was going to need some milk to help it to combine, but gradually and very slowly it all came together and formed a lovely soft dough. It is quite a tough dough to roll out, mainly because it is such a large recipe. I rolled mine in ¼ lots, so that I had better control of the overall thickness. The dough is equally as delicious uncooked, but make sure you leave some for the cookies! This recipe calls for unsweeted cocoa, I had a couple of types, I was going to use my expensive dutch one but on Thursday night we had popped into Costco after work and they had Hershey’s, and it is delicious. A lovely change from the expensive stuff!
It was so nice to get feedback from people who don’t know me and my cooking. All the feedback I received on Saturday was positive and there were a gang of kids who demolished half the jar in about 15 minutes. The main comment I received was how lovely it was to have a cookie with a soft centre. I have to admit this is also one of my favourite things about this cookie. To make the ganche I just used some white chocolate melts that I had left over from something else mixed with a few teaspoons of thickened cream and piped it from a bag fitted with a size 2 nozzle. It was really easy once I got the hang of it. I felt really good to get some of my creations out to a wider audience and hopefully I can continue this further into the future.