Chocolate Fudge Cookies
1 cup (115 grams) pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped (could also use walnuts or hazelnuts)
1/2 cup (56 grams) cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder or instant coffee powder (optional)
1 pound (450 grams) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup (57 grams) unsalted butter, melted
1 3/4 cups (350 grams) granulated white sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (170 grams) semisweet dark chocolate chips
1 cup (170 grams) white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Place the pecans on a baking sheet and toast for 8-10 minutes, or until lightly brown and fragrant. Let nuts cool and then chop coarsely. Set aside.
Sift or whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder into small bowl. Set aside.
Melt the chocolate and butter in a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside.
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the sugar and eggs until pale yellow and thick, about 5 minutes. When you slowly raise the beaters the batter will fall back into the bowl in slow ribbons. Beat in the melted chocolate mixture and vanilla extract. Fold in the dry ingredients to the chocolate batter and mix only until incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate the batter until firm, about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Drop batter by 1/4 cupfuls onto prepared cookie sheets, spacing evenly. With moist fingers, press batter to form 3 1/2 (9 cm) to 4 inch (10 cm) rounds. Bake cookies about 12 - 14 minutes or until the tops of the cookies become dry and cracked, but are still shiny. Do not overbake these cookies.
Remove from oven and place baking pan on a wire rack to cool. When cookies are firm, remove from baking pan and let completely cool on rack.
These cookies are best the day they are baked but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days.
Makes about 24 large cookies.
Peanut Butter Cookies:
3/4 cup (170 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup (105 grams) light brown sugar
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated white sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup (185 grams) peanut butter (smooth or crunchy)
2 cups (260 grams) all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped peanuts or 1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
Peanut Butter Cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy (about 2 - 3 minutes). Beat in the peanut butter. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat to combine. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to the peanut butter mixture and beat until incorporated. Fold in the chopped peanuts, if using. (If the batter is too soft to form into balls, place in the refrigerator for about an hour or until firm.)
Roll the batter into 1 inch (2.54 cm) balls. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheet, placing about 2 inches (5 cm) apart. Then, using the tines of the fork that has been dipped in white granulated sugar, make a crisscross pattern.
Bake the cookies for about 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly browned around the edges. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Can be stored at room temperature, in an airtight container, for about a week. Freeze for longer storage.
Makes about 40 cookies.