This is an intensely chocolate cookie! I’m not usually that fond of dark chocolate, but in this cookie I think that all of the flavors are really well balanced. I substituted dried cranberries for the raisins, which I often do in recipes. Maybe it makes it a little more “northwest.” On vacation one summer my husband and I visited a cranberry farm on the Washington coast. Cranberries are grown so differently than many really know, so low to the ground and then the field is flooded when it is time for harvest.
Every Christmas my husband makes his Christmas cake (English fruitcake) and he’s started substituting more local ingredients instead of the candied fruits in the original recipe. The recipe comes from this old cookbook that belonged to his mother. This poor cookbook is falling apart, but it has great recipes. He does quite a few modifications, such as hazelnuts for the nuts, dried cranberries and cherries instead of candied fruit. It’s quite an involved cake when it’s all together (and also burned out the motor of his big mixer!) but I look forward to it each year. Of course, it’s bathed in brandy after it is baked, so it’s good on that account if nothing else!
Back to this recipe, I really liked the combination of dark chocolate with the cranberries and the salted peanuts. I don’t know why salty works so well with chocolate, but I just love it together here. I used roasted salted peanuts, which are quite salty on their own, but add a great flavor here.
1/3 cup flour
¼ cup cocoa
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons butter, cut in pieces
6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
2 large eggs, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup dark chocolate chunks
1 cup white chocolate chips
1-1/2 cup coarsely chopped nuts (I used roasted, salted peanuts)
1 cup raisins (I used dried cranberries)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with silicone mats.
Mix together flour, cocoa, salt and baking powder. In a double boiler melt the butter, bittersweet chocolate and unsweetened chocolate. The mixture will be smooth and shiny but make sure it doesn’t get too hot. Remove from the heat and let cool a bit.
Beat the eggs and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. (I use a stand mixer.) Mix together on medium speed for 2 minutes, until pale and foamy. Add in the vanilla and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the
butter/chocolate mixture, mixing until incorporated. Add the flour mixture and combine on low just until combined.
Stir in the chocolate chunks, white chips, nuts and cranberries. The dough is mainly chips and nuts, since there isn’t a lot of batter. Drop by tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheets. The cookies don’t spread very much so you can place them fairly close together. I flatted the cookies down a bit so they wouldn’t be quite so round. Bake for 10-12 minutes. The cookies will look dry on top but are still soft in the center. Remove from the baking sheet to cool completely on wire racks.
From Baking from My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan