Monday, June 27, 2011

Slice-and-Bake Chocolate Cookies

Although I follow a few different food blogs out there in the blogosphere, my absolute favorite food blogger is Deb, over at the  Her writing is engaging and witty, she's incredibly informative, and on more than one occasion, her pictures have made me want to lick my computer screen.  So far I have been able to resist the urge, but just barely.

With that said, it is a little shocking that I haven't actually tried a recipe from her vast archive.  Even more shocking when the smitten kitchen is behind the majority of recipes on my online Recipes to Try list.  I finally put an end to my holding out this weekend with her Slice-and-Bake cookies, a recipe adapted from Dorie Greenspan.  Unfortunately, for my first of many recipes from the site, they didn't quite blow my mind as I had been hoping, although I will chalk that up to my lack of imagination and ingredients, rather than a faulty recipe. 

Deb gives a good little laundry list of possible variations for this slice and bake, many of which I want to eventually try.  I do love how simple yet adaptable the dough is and the idea that you can keep a log or two in the freezer and at a moments notice pop out a few dozen cookies.  I went with the chocolate because I didn't want to make just plain cookies and I really didn't have anything in my pantry (which at that point was residing pre-move on my dining room table...) to mix-in.  The batter itself was yummy, although you could taste the flour, something I had hoped would cook out.  The final cookie was good, it just wasn't exciting in any way.  It lacked a little bit of sweetness and some chocolatey goodness, both issues I think could have been easily resolved with the addition of some chopped semisweet chocolate goodness.  Seeing as there is a multitude of ways to adapt the cookie, it's safe to say that in the near future there will be a repeat.  Or at least a frozen log in the freezer...

I'm moving!  So please excuse any lack in cooking and posting.  In my heart, I have one more post in me before leaving South Carolina, but my head would like all of it's cleaning deposit back, so we'll see what the outcome of that battle is.  If you don't hear from me until I'm in Indiana, I'm sorry!  But that just means I'm getting ready for new adventures in a brand new (to me at least) apartment kitchen.

Slice-and-Bake Chocolate Cookies
borrowed from

makes about 50 cookies

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temp
2/3 c. confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 large egg yolks, room temp
Pinch of salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder

Although the recipe calls for doing this in an electric mixture, my KitchenAid was already clean and packed away, so I preceded by hand, maybe another reason my cookies weren't as stellar as I hoped.  I summarized the smitten kitchen instructions below:

Using the paddle attachment, mix butter at medium speed until smooth.  Add sifted confectioners' sugar and continue to beat at medium speed until butter and sugar is smooth and silky.  Beat in egg yolks and salt.  If adding any mix-ins, do so now.  On low speed, add flour to mixture, beating until just incorporated.  It's better to underbeat than overbeat and it is ok if the flour isn't fully incorporated.  Divide dough in half and form into balls; wrap each in plastic wrap.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes. 

On a smooth surface, take each ball and work into a log, about 1 to 1 1/4 inches in diameter.  Rewrap each log in plastic wrap and chill for at least two hours.  Batter can be stored, ready to bake at this point, in the fridge up to 3 days.  Additionally, it can be frozen at this point for up to a month.

Preheat oven to 350°F, line two baking sheets with parchment paper. 

Remove logs from fridge and using a sharp knife, cut log into cookies about 1/3 inch thick.  Try as best as possible to keep thickness consistent.  Put cookies on baking sheet with around half an inch of space in between; they will expand.  Bake for 10-14 minutes.  Cookies should be set, but now browned.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool to room temperature.  For storage, put cookies in an airtight container.

Make sure to head on over to to check out a list of fun variations!

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