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For Chocolate Lovers only
 

Chocolate cake


SEPTEMBER 2002
RECIPES



Chocolate-Sour Cream Drops

Chocolate-Raspberry Focaccia

Bob Batson's "Oaxaca Flats"

Dulce de Leche Bars

Chocolate-Coffee Crisps



Sweet Spot

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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 spray.

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).

Cookies:

  • 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

Icing:

  • 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 container).

 

Yields: About 2-1/2 dozen cookies


© Stephanie Zonis provides the above information to anyone, but retains copyright on all text. This means that you may not: distribute the text to others without the express written permission of Stephanie Zonis; “mirror” or include this information on your own server or documents without my permission; modify or re-use the text on this system. You MAY: print copies of the information for your own personal use; store the files on your own computer for your personal use only; reference hypertext documents on this server from your own documents.

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