C is for cookies

We were having some friends over after dinner at ABC for Simon’s birthday, so I decided to make some cookies we could nibble on while we chatted and drank wine and tea. There’s always room for cookies right?

I’d seen a great article about classic biscuits in Jamie magazine. Initially I wanted to make Garibaldis as I hadn’t them for ages and remember them fondly from childhood. But they required a few too many steps, and I was feeling sort of lazy. Will try them one day though. Anyway, there was also a recipe for ginger nuts, so I decided to try them out.

It was pretty simple – just mix the dry ingredients together, add butter and mix by hand til it resembles breadcrumbs. Then add golden syrup, combine and roll out into balls. I had some crystallized ginger in the cupboard so I chopped that finely and added it in. They turned out really well. I think next time I might add a little less flour so they come out a bit thinner and harder, these were slightly cake like in the middle even though I pressed them quite thin.

Ginger nut dough, being rolled into balls

Ginger nuts ready to go in the oven

The final product!

I also decided to make some chocolate chip cookies, with the same recipe I always use. But I wanted to make them a bit different this time as everyone had tried them before, so added white chocolate chips, cranberries and oats to the mix. It took a couple of rounds to get them right – basically you need loads of oats before they really make a difference to the texture.

Cookies straight out of the oven

The finished dark and white chocolate, cranberry and oat cookies

At this point, I probably should have stopped as I was fast running out of boxes to put all these cookies in, but I wanted to make my fail proof recipe for chocolate brownie cookies, just in case the others weren’t good (I’m very paranoid about not having enough food when people come over).  They always turn out great and you can adjust them depending on whether you want something a bit more brownie like (add more flour and egg) or something richer and more chocolatey (add loads more chocolate and butter.) This time I went for the brownie-like version.

Chocolate brownie cookie dough with my new mini ice cream scoop from Shanghai Street!

Cookie dough ready to be baked. I add the chocolate chips on top rather than mix them in.

Chocolate brownie cookies fresh out of the oven

I love making cookies – maybe because they are so easy and allow you to be creative – plus you can quickly see if you need to adjust the recipe after you’ve baked a batch. Sadly I’ve now eaten my body weight in cookies this weekend so it’s going to be a while before I bake any more!

Ginger Nuts

Makes around 30.

  • 200g plain flour
  • 1 tspn baking powder
  • 1 tspn baking soda
  • 2 tspn ground ginger
  • 2 tspn nutmeg
  • 1 tspn cinnamon
  • 1 tspn ground cloves
  • pinch of salt
  • 100g brown sugar
  • 120g butter, cut into cubes
  • 5 tbspn golden syrup
  • crystallised ginger, chopped into small pieces
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Line a cookie sheet with baking paper or grease it.
  3. Place dry ingredients into a bowl and mix together well.
  4. Add butter and mix with hands til the mixture resembles breadcrumbs
  5. Add golden syrup and use spoon to mix in.
  6. Add ginger (use as much as you like, I only used a couple of small pieces and cut them into small slivers)
  7. Roll into balls and press flat with palm of hand or bottom of a glass.
  8. Sprinkle a little granulated or raw sugar on top of each cookies
  9. Bake for 10 minutes.

Chocolate chip cookies

Makes 30 cookies

  • 120g butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 tspn vanilla essence
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 tspn baking powder
  • 1/2 tspn baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • chocolate chips, cranberries – add as much as you like! can also add pecans or other nuts, or raisins.
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Mix together butter and sugar til well combined then add eggs and vanilla
  3. In another bowl, sift together all the dry ingredients except the oats.
  4. Combine wet and dry ingredients. Add oats.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips / cranberries etc.
  6. Scoop out spoonfuls of the dough and roll into balls. Press down with a fork.
  7. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown but still soft.

Chocolate Brownie Cookies

Makes 24 cookies

  • 160 g dark chocolate chopped
  • 140 g butter chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla essence
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Heat chocolate and butter in a pot over a low heat, stirring constantly until melted and smooth.
  3. Meanwhile, beat together eggs, sugar and vanilla essence until pale and fluffy. Fold chocolate mixture into egg mixture.
  4. Sift together flour, baking powder and cocoa then add to the mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  5. Place spoonfuls of the mixture on a greased or lined baking tray and bake for about 10-12 minutes. Cookies should be soft in the middle so best to under cook rather than over bake them.
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