Things I really love lately:
1. How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran. You should read it if you’re a woman. You should read it if you’re a man. You REALLY should read it if you enjoy wonderful things… And laughing out loud in public places.
2. Elvis Costello (again). Do you think he and Diana Krall (coolest marriage ever, or what?) would adopt me? I mean, I make snacks and love napping, so…
3. This owl vase. It needs no explaining.
4. Colin Meloy, superhero nerd-lit singer-songwriter of the Decemberists, and Rob Delany, Funny Ridiculous Man, tweeting each other. YES, Twitter. Do what you do.
6. These cookies I’m about to tell you about. So much chewiness. So much chocolate. And then there are almonds. And! They’re quick to make. I’m sold.
I know the golden rule of cookie dough is: chill, chill, chill. Sometimes a sister doesn’t have that kind of time… So I bake right away usually, and they come out perfect, spreading just enough, crispy on the edges and chewy everywhere else.
The possibilities are endless–any kind of chocolate and any kind of nut will be just splendid. Though I prefer dark chocolate in most situations, this dough is already loaded with dark, rich cocoa, so the mellow sweetness of a milk chocolate chip is most welcome. It’s all very elegant, actually.
Normally, I also like to add dried tart cherries to this whole mess (I know! Cherries and almonds and chocolate), but not everyone is into dried fruit, as far as I know. Also, I accidentally picked up sweetened dried sour cherries, which I’m honestly not very interested in.
I also have been wanting to try adding chunks of candied orange zest to these. That right there would be a personal nirvana. Seriously, I’d just float off into outer space.
So, yes! Make this your cookie playground, chocolate lovers.
I’m behind you 100% (and your hair smells gooooood).
Double Chocolate and Almond Chunk Cookies
(adapted from Epicurious)
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened, Dutch processed cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
Scant 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup milk chocolate chips (or a quality bar, about 3.5 ounces, coarsely chopped)
1 cup whole raw almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar with a mixer until pale and fluffy (2-3 minutes), then add eggs, one at a time, beating just until incorporated. At a lower speed, add the flour mixture, beating just until incorporated. With a wooden spoon, stir in the chocolate and nuts, again, mixing just until incorporated.
Use a scoop to drop walnut-sized balls of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing about 2 inches apart. Use your slightly damp fingers to smooth the tops and gently flatten the cookies a bit.
Bake, rotating halfway through, until puffy, about 12-14 minutes. Cool on the sheets, placed on a cooling rack, for 15 minutes or so, then transfer cookies directly onto rack to cool completely. Makes 2 dozen or so.