Dark Chocolate Orange Cookies

Dark chocolate is good for you. This is what I’ve heard. I’ve also heard red wine is good for my soul, kills cancer and makes a mean risotto. If I pour myself a glass of Rioja, have one of these cookies and watch Masterchef, it’s almost like I’m at the gym doing a Body Sculpt class, right?

Possibly wrong. But if I do a Body Sculpt class, write my project proposal in time and hit my monthly blog target, then I can have some wine and cookies. Now that is productivity that is most certainly good for me.

I made these cookies back when the shops were filled with heart shaped balloons, gushy cards and over-stuffed teddy bears. I said goodbye to the pastel pink offerings of Clinton Cards and instead said hello to zesty orange, dark and delicious soft brown sugar and a hefty block of good-for-the-soul dark chocolate. This is love personified in a cookie, and I urge you to fill your heart with these babies. Served with said red wine, of course.

Dark brown sugar gives these cookies a deeper taste that is reminiscent of syrupy treacle, and the chocolate will melt and ooze into the orange zest, providing your kitchen with the smell of the Christmas stocking favourite, Terry’s Chocolate Orange. But let me assure you, these cookies are far better than anything Santa could leave in an old kilt sock. Simply bake and serve to your sweetheart, even if Valentine’s Day isn’t for another year yet. Say I love you all year round, and say it with cookies.

 

Basic cookie recipe inspired by Edd Kimber

 

Makes 12

You Will Need

113g softened unsalted butter or Stork

110g caster sugar

110g soft dark brown sugar

1 egg, beaten

A dot of vanilla paste

250g plain flour

½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

1 orange, zested

100g 70% dark chocolate

 

Place the sugars and the butter in a large mixing bowl and using a hand mixer, beat for about 3 minutes until soft and creamy. Add the egg a little at a time and the vanilla paste.

Combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, salt and orange zest and add to the sugar and butter mixture in three additions. Fold in the chocolate by hand and wrap the dough tightly in clingfilm. Chill in the freezer for 15 minutes or leave in the fridge overnight.

Preheat the oven to 180oc/160oc fan/ Gas Mark 4 and grease two baking trays with butter. Remove the cookie dough from the fridge or freezer and roll into balls about 60g in weight.

Space out evenly on the trays and bake for 13-15 minutes, until golden round the edges but still slightly soft. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve with black coffee for an afternoon treat, pack up for a loved one or enjoy with a glass of red wine.

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