Chocolate-Sour Cream Drops
Tips: These pretty drop cookies, each with an alluring swirl
of dark, shiny icing, taste pleasantly of the good flavors of chocolate
and sour cream. They are soft, not crisp, and would be lovely for
an afternoon tea or a family dessert. When making them, it is a
nice advantage to have nonstick cooling racks and a nonstick, wide-bladed,
metal spatula to transfer the cookies from pan to rack, but if you
do not, simply spray your utensils very lightly with nonstick cooking
One important note about these cookies: they do not keep well at
room temperature. Even if kept overnight and tightly sealed, the
un-iced portion of the cookie top becomes sticky. That's not tragic,
but it's nice to be able to eat cookies when they're at their best,
so eat these quickly or freeze them (they freeze very well).
- 1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 6 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 egg, graded large, preferably at room temperature
- 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled until tepid
- 1/3 cup well-stirred sour cream, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup well-stirred sour cream, cool but not cold
- 2 Tbsp. sifted confectioners sugar
- Few grains of salt
- 4 ounces (2/3 cup) semisweet chocolate chips
Adjust rack to center of oven; preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line
cookie sheets with aluminum foil, shiny side up; set aside. Into
small bowl, sift flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
In medium bowl, with large spoon, cream together softened butter,
sugar, and vanilla until well-mixed and fluffy. Beat in egg. Add
chocolate all at once; beat in thoroughly, scraping spoon and sides
of bowl well.
Stir in half of sifted dry ingredients, then all of sour cream.
Add remaining sifted dry ingredients and stir in until combined.
Dough will be soft.
Bake three cookies first as a test; it can be tricky to judge when
these are done. Portion dough by well-rounded teaspoons onto a prepared
cookie sheet (or smaller, foil-lined, shallow pan). Bake in center
of oven for 8 to 9 minutes, turning pan back-to-front after about
5 minutes. Cookies will spread and puff up during baking. They are
done when a toothpick inserted about an inch from a cookie edge
emerges with a few moist crumbs still clinging to it; do not overbake.
Remove pan from oven. Allow baked cookies to stand 3 minutes before
removing to cooling rack (you'll have to scrape off the spatula
blade after transferring every cookie or every other cookie).
Continue portioning out, baking, and cooling cookies as above.
When baking a full sheet, I place 12 cookies on a 15-1/2 by 10-1/2
inch foil-lined baking sheet. When the last baked cookies have been
transferred to the cooling racks, start preparing the icing.
For icing: Measure out cold sour cream. Let stand at room temperature
until most of the chill is off, or microwave for just a few seconds
at 50% (medium) power to help give a head start to this process.
Stir in confectioners' sugar and salt.
In small microwaveable bowl, melt chocolate chips at 50% (medium)
power, microwaving them for short intervals and stirring well after
each interval, just until chips are almost melted. Stir until completely
melted and smooth. (Alternatively, suspend a small heatproof bowl
over simmering water on low heat-water should not touch bottom of
bowl-and stir often until almost smooth. Remove from heat and hot
water; stir until smooth.)
All at once, add sour cream mixture and whisk in briskly. The theory
here is that, if your chocolate and sour cream mixture were both
at the correct temperature, the whisking process will yield a beautifully
smooth, shiny icing that is ready to use on your cookies right away,
and America will be safe for democracy once more. What you're more
likely to end up with, however, is a lumpy mess-don't worry. If
your icing has lumps or isn't well-combined, think about how you
melted the chocolate. If you melted it over simmering water, return
the bowl of icing to the suspended position over simmering water.
Whisk constantly just until it begins to melt together, then remove
from heat and hot water and continue whisking until smooth. If you
used a microwave, return the bowl of icing to the microwave; microwave
it for a few seconds at 50% (medium) power, then whisk well until
smooth. The icing should hold a soft peak when the whisk is lifted
from the bowl, but if you had to reheat it to get out the lumps,
it may have become too warm and runny. Chill it for a few minutes,
whisking often, just until it's of the correct consistency.
Place about a teaspoonful (not a measuring teaspoon) of icing in
the center of two completely cooled cookies, then spread it a bit
to cover more of the surface of each. You want a border of uniced
cookie to show through on the cookie edges. Continue portioning
out and spreading the icing onto the cooled cookies.
Cookies may be stored at cool room temperature for up to a day,
or frozen for longer storage. To freeze, freeze on wax-paper-lined
cooled cookie sheet in a single layer before stacking in freezer
container (put a sheet of wax paper between each layer in freezer
Yields: About 2-1/2 dozen cookies
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