Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Chocolate lace cookies

Monday afternoon, after a long day at university, I visited a lovely place, full of relaxation and happiness.  This perfect little place is called Procrastination Station, and I visit it with stunning regularity.  It is so easy for me to visit Procrastination Station, because often it's situated in my own house, and 9 times out of 10, it's in my kitchen. It's not my fault I'm always at Procrastination Station. I blame it on assignments and unenthusiastic lecturers and a sore brain.

Anyway, on Monday, mid-assignment, I decided that this blog had a depressing lack of chocolatey indulgence and it needed to be fixed, so off I went to Procrastination Station.  I've made these beauties quite a few times now, and they've always been a hit, mainly because they're the perfect "I'm-eating-away-my-feelings-leave-me-alone" food, which is what stress forces me to do. They are amazing, the perfect pick-me-up.  Rich, sweet, powdery, chocolatey perfection.  So I thought I'd share these pretties with you to make me feel better about myself.

Chocolate Lace Cookies

Makes about 52 - this is not accurate, due to the fact greedy family members stole some away whilst I was baking

225g of dark courveture chocolate
1 1/4 cups of plain/all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of pure cocoa powder
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of salt
8 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1 1/3 cups of caster sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/3 of a cup of milk
Extra caster sugar for rolling
Icing/confectioner's sugar for rolling

Preheat your oven to 180˚C.  Roughly chop the chocolate and melt in a bowl over a pot of simmering water.  Make sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl the chocolate's in.  Once it's done, set aside to cool.  Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and cocoa into a bowl.

In a large bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined.  Add the melted chocolate.  Put the mixer on low speed and add the milk and dry ingredients, alternating between the two, until just combined.

Divide the dough into halves and wrap with plastic wrap.  Chill in the freezer for about 2 hours or until firm.

Once the dough is done chilling in the freezer with its icecream homies, scoop teaspoon-sized portions and roll them into balls with clean hands.  I found it helps to dampen your hands with water for this bit as they roll more smoothly and less mixture sticks to your hands.  Roll the balls in caster sugar and then toss them in the icing/confectioner's sugar.  Be liberal with the confectioner's sugar as this is what gives the cookies their gorgeous white shells.  Dont be afraid to pile a bit of icing sugar on top of the balls for extra powderyness.

Place the balls onto a tray lined with baking paper, spaced about 2-3 inches apart as they will spread as they cook.  Bake them until the icing sugar splits and the cookies have flattened - about 10-15 minutes.  You can gauge when they're ready by feeling the edges of the cookies.  Once the edges start to harden, it's time to take them out to cool.

When families attack.

Let the cookies cool and enjoy with a tall glass of milk!

A printable version of the recipe can be found below!

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