Crispy Edged Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I look for three things in a chocolate chip cookie: a caramelized sugar flavor, crispy edges and a soft center. I found my other cookie recipe to be a bit too thick and chewy so I changed a few things up for that perfect balance of crisp, buttery edge and chewy middle. 

Adapted from cooks illustrated.  

Makes about 32 cookies.  

Chocolate Chip Cookies 

1 cup unsalted butter, halfway melted

1/2 cup granulated sugar 

1 cup light brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

1 egg + 1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon course kosher salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 1/4 cup all purpose flour

10 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

With a hand or stand mixer, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add vanilla, eggs, salt and baking soda, mix 2 minutes more. Add flour and mix until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips. Form into tablespoon sized balls and chill in fridge 20 minutes. 

While dough is chilling, heat oven to 375 degrees and oil cookie sheets. 

Arrange dough balls on cookie sheets, about 2 inches apart. (They will spread a bit during baking.) Bake 8 minutes, remove from oven. Cool 8 minutes on their sheets and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.  

 

Almond Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies (Paleo, GF, DF)

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Happy 2018!! Let's start things off right with these grain free cookies. I've been hiding a bag of chocolate chips on myself for the last month or so until I felt like whipping these up. I have a hiding spot in one of the difficult to reach cupboards that I never go into and that is away from all the other food. I use this to hide things from myself like crackers specifically for a get together, nutella or chocolate chips. I would have eaten these chocolate chips if I had not hidden them, same for said crackers. Maybe not the same for the nutella. 

Back to the cookies! These are a super yummy chocolate chip cookie made with almond flour and sweetened with maple syrup. I'm really pleased with this recipe: grain free, paleo, dairy free, refined sugar free, easy to make and soft. I like a soft cc cookie, don't you? 

A note on ingredients: Use almond flour, not almond meal. I use Nutiva coconut and red palm shortening. The coffee grounds should be very fine, like espresso. I had courser drip sized grounds here so I buzzed them in the grinder for a few seconds until they were fine. They can be considered optional but really give these cookies a warm, toasty flavor. I also used an electric hand mixer for all of the mixing, besides folding in the chocolate chips. You can also use a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. 

makes 24 cookies. 

Almond Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies

3 cups almond flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon course kosher salt

dash cinnamon

1 tablespoon very finely ground coffee

2/3 cup coconut & red palm shortening, room temperature

2/3 cup maple syrup

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 cup chocolate chips

In a bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and coffee to evenly combine. Set aside. 

In a mixing bowl, use a hand mixer to beat shortening and maple syrup together until it no longer looks curdled, about 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla, mix 2 minutes more. Mixture will look weird and slightly curdled or separated. This is ok. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix well. Fold in chocolate chips. 

The batter will seem much different than your usual cookie dough - lighter, wetter and stickier. This is ok. 

Chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes. In the meantime, heat oven to 350 degrees and line two cookie sheets with a silicone baking mat or lightly oiled parchment paper. Remove dough from fridge and drop tablespoon sized spoonfuls of dough onto the prepared trays. Give them some room as they will spread when baking. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool a bit on pan before removing. 

Cookies are best warm out of the oven or stored in the fridge in an airtight container. 

Cranberry Coconut Healthy Cookies (Vegan, GF, DF)

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As you can probably tell from my posts, I don't eat many sweets or sugar anymore. I try to limit my sugar intake to only fruit which means not a lot of baked sweets happening around here. I prefer to 'save' my sugar indulgences for things like coconut ice cream or a piece of vegan layer cake. Treating it as a rare, special occasion thing has helped changed my sweet tooth to a healthy tooth. You'll notice most of my dessert recipes are sugar free, use natural sugars like maple syrup or are sweetened with a fruit. 

These cookies are made without sugar and sweetened only with a banana and the dried cranberries. 

Cranberry Coconut Healthy Cookies

1 mashed ripe banana

1/2 cup quick GF oats

2 tablespoons dried cranberries 

2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut flakes

1 tablespoon chopped pecans

dash cinnamon and nutmeg

pinch salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a small baking tray with a silpat or parchment paper. Set aside. 

In a medium sized bowl, combine all ingredients. Use a tablespoon to portion 8 cookies onto prepared baking tray. Cookies will not flatten or expand during baking so flatten them into round cookie shapes. Bake 15 minutes. Remove. Cool. 

Molasses Cookies (AIP, Paleo, GF, DF)

Who doesn't love a molasses cookie in December?  To me, they are the perfect christmas cookie.  I worked on a recipe over the weekend that whether you're aip, paleo or not you will enjoy.  These are very well balanced cookies - not too sweet, soft and chewy with a hint of spice.  Perfect for leaving out for santa or dipping in a cool glass of coconut milk.  

Makes 16 cookies. 

AIP Molasses Cookies

1.5 cups cassava flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 cup molasses

1/2 cup palm/coconut shortening

1/8 cup coconut sugar - optional

1 gelatin egg (1 tablespoon gelatin bloomed in 1 tablespoon water, whisked with 1 tablespoon boiling water)

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking tray with parchment paper.  Set aside. 

In a mixing bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt.  Add molasses, shortening and gelatin egg.  Use an electric hand or stand mixer until it looks like cookie dough - it takes a couple minutes.  Use a tablespoon to portion, form balls and roll lightly in coconut sugar if you like.  

Use either cookie shaping techniques:

1. For smooth, flat cookies - Place dough ball on prepared cookie sheet, press with bottom of mason jar to flatten.  Bake 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and cool.  These cookies will be smooth, flat discs.

2. Or for rustic, crinkled cookies - Place dough ball on prepared cookie sheet, bake 15 minutes, remove from oven and flatten cookies.  Let cool.  

Lemon Poppy Seed Shortbread Cookies

My grandma is full of good ideas, especially when it comes to food.  At our thanksgiving dinner she mentioned that there just aren't enough cookie recipes posted on the blog.  She's right - so much soup but almost never cookies.  This is mostly because I post what I eat at home and I just can't have entire batches of just made sweets waiting for me to eat every last one of them but sometimes, I need a treat!  Maybe it's the festive holiday spirit in the air?  

So, Grandma, if you're reading this, this cookie recipe is here at your brilliant suggestion.  

Lemon Poppy seed Shortbread Cookies

3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup powdered sugar

3 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

zest of 1 lemon

2 tablespoons poppy seeds

Combine butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Cream butter and sugar on medium low speed until pale and light, about 4 minutes. Add flour, salt, vanilla, lemon zest and poppy seeds.  Mix just until dough holds together when squeezed.  Scrape sides of bowl, as needed.  Form into a 1" thick disc, wrap in plastic and chill until firm, 2 hours.  

Roll dough out onto lightly floured surface, to 1/4" thickness.  Use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes.  Place on un-greased cookie sheets.  Re-roll scrapes and cut until all of dough is used. Decorative stamps or dots maybe applied as you like.  (I like a few simple pokes with the tip of a chopstick across the cookie top.)  Place in fridge to chill 10 minutes and heat oven to 325 degrees.  Bake about 30 minutes, until almost golden brown at edges.  Cool of rack. 

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

These are classic, no frills chocolate chip cookies.  A dessert staple -these were made by all my relatives growing up and it's my go to chocolate chip cookie recipe.  

Makes 30 cookies.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup butter, room temperate

1 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

3 cups flour

1 package semi sweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare cookie sheets with liners or grease.  Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and both sugars.  Stir in eggs and vanilla.  

In another bowl, whisk salt, baking soda and flour together.  Combine with wet ingredients.  Fold in chocolate chips.  Use a tablespoon to portion out cookies, form them into spheres and arrange on baking sheets.  (They will spread during baking, I fit 12 on a half a sheet tray.) 

Bake 10 minutes.  Let cool. 

Gluten Free Almond + Chocolate Chip Cookies

So long gluten!  We don't need you for our cookie making.  Gluten free or not, these are tasty cookies, soft and cakey with nice texture from the almond flour.  

I'm planning on working on more GF and possibly vegan cookie recipes.  Looking forward to sharing (and eating) the results!

About 12 cookies.

Gluten Free Almond + chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup almond flour

1/3 cup light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

pinch nutmeg

 pinch salt

1 egg

1/4 cup oil (your choice, I used grape seed)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup chocolate chips or raw cacao nibs

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl, whisk almond flour, brown sugar, baking powder, nutmeg and salt.  Add egg, oil and vanilla extract.  Mix until well combined.  Mix in chocolate chips/nibs.  Chill dough 10 minutes to firm it up. (You can skip this but you're cookies will spread a bit more.)  

Use a tablespoon to portion dough onto a silpat lined baking sheet.  Bake 12 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool on pan, 5 minutes.  Carefully remove from silpat by sweeping an off set spatula underneath each cookie.  

Palmiers

Got a holiday party to go to?  Good.  Whatcha bringing?  Bring these!  Palmiers, a darling little puff pastry based cookie.  Also sometimes called elephant ears or palm leaves.  Because there's only three ingredients, one of which is pre-made puff pastry, they are one of the quickest and most economical treats one could make.  I really can't get enough of these little things.  

Palmiers

1 lb puff pastry dough, thawed if frozen

flour for dusting rolling surface

1 cup sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon

Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Combine cinnamon and sugar.  Set aside.  On on lightly floured surface, roll puff pastry dough into a 18" x 14" rectangle.  Sprinkle generously with cinnamon sugar.  Usea rolling pin to press sugar into dough.  Flip dough, sprinkle generously with cinnamon sugar, press sugar into dough with rolling pin.  Fold left and right edges in so they meet at the center.  Fold edges into center again and fold in half like a book.  Chill about 15 minutes to firm dough - this makes it easier to cut.  Then slice into 1 centimeter wide slices. Press each slice into cinnamon sugar.  Arrange on a parchment or silpat lined sheet tray, leaving 2 inches between each slice with each slice sightly pinched out.   Bake 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and flip each individual palmier to caramelize the sugar on the other side.  Return to oven and bake 6 minutes more or until golden brown.  

Chocolate Cherry Sea Salt Cookies

These chewy little things have a lot of great things going for them:  chocolate, sea salt, olive oil and dried cherries.  Yum!

Makes about 16 cookies.

Chocolate Cherry Sea Salt Cookies

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon course salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup olive oil

2 eggs

1/2 cup dried cherries

pinches of maldon sea salt, for finishing

Whisk together cocoa, sugar, flour, baking soda and salt.  Stir in olive oil and eggs.  When combined, fold in cherries.  Wrap and chill in fridge at least 3 hours.  

Once chilled, heat oven to 350 degrees.  Scoop tablespoonfuls of dough and roll into balls.  Sprinkle a bit of maldon sea salt on a plate and lightly touch the balls to the salt to pick it up.  Arrange on lined baking sheet with room for spreading during baking.  Bake immediatly, for about 10 minutes.  Let cool.  

 

Meyer Lemon Meringue Cookies

So much good looking citrus around lately.  I love Meyer lemons, they tasty like a very lemony orange.  Meringues are super light, airy confections for whipped egg yolks and sugar with a crisp outer shell and soft inside.   Easy as they are too make, they are easier to eat.  I have the hardest time not eating all of these while they are cooling.  

Also, don't throw out those egg yolks.  Save them for hollandaise, mayonnaise, key lime pie, custard, ice cream.  I think I'm saving mine for pasta.  

Makes about 36 1 1/2 inch cookies.

Meyer Lemon Meringue Cookies

3 egg whites (at room temperature)  (save the yolks!)

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

generous pinch of salt

3/4 cup sugar

zest of 1 meyer lemon

1 1/2 teaspoon meyer lemon juice

Heat oven to 200 degrees.  Line 2 half pans with a silpat or parchment paper.  

In a mixing bowl, give eggs a quick beat eggs until foamy, about 10 seconds. Add cream of tartar and salt.  Beat on medium speed until peaks form.  Slowly add sugar, by the tablespoon, beating well after each addition, until all sugar is gone and stiff peaks have formed.  Fold in zest and juice.  

Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a large flower tip.  Pipe cookies of desired size onto lined baking sheet.  Meringues don't expand or rise when baking so they don't require much room.  Cookies can also be formed by being dropped by the spoonful onto the baking sheet.  

Bake 2 hours on upper racks.  Cool in oven 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and cool 20 minutes more.