Saturday, May 24, 2008

moving sucks out your soul

My absence here in the last fifteen days might suggest that I have decided to quit being housewifely. Not so. Over the first two weeks of summer I have done more baking, cleaning, cooking, and the like than I have in the last several months. The trouble is, I was also finishing up final exams and papers while moving home. My dorm was (and will be in the floor) a fourth floor walk up and I cannot seem to live without my muffin tins, stationary, or a few dozen hundred books, so I had a lot of stuff to move, and oops, now I am making excuses, which seems like poor etiquette. I am starting a new job on Tuesday, but one of my goals for the summer is to keep up with the blog pretty much daily, especially as there is nothing I love to do more when I have the full home kitchen at my disposal than make cookies.

In penance, I offer up the recipe for incredibly chocolate-y cookies that I made three weeks ago. These are so rich and chewy that I think they're the perfect thing for when brownie batter cravings. I kept aside 5-6 for NH and put the rest out on the dining room table for my sorority sisters, and they were gone very quickly. They're a simple variation of a peanut butter and chocolate confection I saw on Baking Bites, but since NH doesn't like peanut butter at all I do not bake with it much. You can check out the original recipe here.

Oh, I picked up Martha Stewart's relatively recent Cookies at Costco today. I am going to make the chocolate pistachio biscotti after I post this.

toasted almond chocolate chunk ridiculously chocolate-y cookies

1/2-1 cup whole almonds
2 cups ap flour
2/3 cup good cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chunks

Preheat oven to 350.

Chop almonds coarsely (you can buy them pre-chopped but I can't account for the quality of chopped nuts and they're more expensive anyhow). Toast the nuts in a dry pan over medium-low heat for a few minutes, until they smell delicious. Keep turning them and make sure they don't burn. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, mix up flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until nice and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour mixture slowly. Fold in chocolate chunks and cooled, toasted almond. Drop nicely rounded tablespoons of dough on a lined cookie sheet, allowing plenty of room for spread. Bake cookies for about ten minutes, or until they appear relatively set. Watch carefully, it can be hard to see if chocolate burns. The cookies will need some time to cook before they can be removed from the sheet.

Yields about forty cookies.

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