Cookie exchanges are a staple at every holiday office party, including the offices of Chow Bella. But the contributors to this blog are a cutthroat bunch, and with an inordinate amount of trash talk thrown about, our cookie exchange quickly became a cookie showdown. Check back here each day through next week to get recipes you can use and find out who'll take home the Cookie Crown.
Today's contender: Zach Fowle's peppermint chocolate bonbons.
There's a girl who sits across from me at my other job, and while she has many other marvelous qualities, I think the one I appreciate most is that she bakes. Every week she'll bring new treats to the office, most of which never make it to my fellow employees because I've already attacked them like a deranged Cookie Monster. Last week she brought in these velvet-soft bonbons, flavored with spicy peppermint and rich chocolate and topped with chunks of candy cane. As I stuffed my face with these treats, I ravenously demanded the recipe, and she obliged.
Get the recipe after the jump.
Peppermint Chocolate Bonbons
This recipe can also be found on myrecipes.com.
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8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup finely crushed hard peppermint candies
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
Additional coarsely crushed hard peppermint candies, divided
1/2 cup powdered sugar (optional)
2 1/2 teaspoons milk (optional)
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate morsels, melted (optional)
- Combine first 3 ingredients in a large saucepan; cook over low heat until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and stir in 1/2 cup crushed peppermint and 6 Tbsp. sugar. Let cool 30 minutes.
- Add eggs to melted chocolate, 1 at a time, stirring well. Stir in extracts.
- Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; add to chocolate mixture, stirring until combined. Stir in chocolate morsels. Cover and chill dough 2 hours or until firm enough to shape.
- Shape dough into 1 1/2" balls; place on parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake at 325° for 12 to 13 minutes or until cookies are puffed and cracked on top. Sprinkle coarsely crushed peppermints onto cookies; press candy lightly into cookies. Let cookies cool 5 minutes on baking sheets. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
- Whisk together powdered sugar and milk; drizzle over cooled cookies, if desired. Drizzle with melted chocolate, if desired. Sprinkle cookies again with chopped peppermint, if desired. Let cookies stand until glaze and chocolate are firm.
Prep: 25 min.; Cook: 13 min. per batch; Other: 2 hr., 35 min.
Yield: 2 1/2 dozen