Monday, March 17, 2014

Texas Fudge Cookies

Texas Fudge Cookies - made March 9, 2014 from Cookies and Cups
I've been writing my blog for several years now but it occurred to me only recently that I've never fully explained my scale. Not the kind you step on and it makes you cry but my taste rating scale when I evaluate what I bake. You can probably glean from random posts that, because I bake so much and so often, I have finicky taste buds when it comes to desserts and a pretty high bar on what I consider worth the empty calories. I balance things out (most of the time) with a whole lot of exercise so I always evaluate whether something is worth a session at the gym, a run for X number of miles, walking for umpteenth hours and tackling my 20-lb dumbbells (my dumbbell set goes to 50 lbs but let's not kid ourselves).
But, not everyone exercises to the same extent or understands how I balance my universe of taste buds vs waistband fit so let me tackle it another way. As you know, I give away 90-95% of what I bake. I'll take a taste test piece, evaluate it, photograph it, write it up and give everything else away. Some of the feedback from my recipients I reflect in my evaluation and some just go into my mental files. But their feedback is how I've come up with my taste scale.

Me: These are okay. Meh.
Everyone else: These are really good.
Me: These are good.
Everyone else: OMG, these are fantastic! To die for! Love them!
Me: OMG, these are fantastic! I think I'll have TWO pieces!
Everyone else: Can I have the recipe? I'm SO making these. When are you making them again? Do you take orders?
Now that you've gotten a little primer on my taste rating scale, you'll have the context to understand when I rate these as "OMG, these are fantastic!" My love for Texas Fudge Cake has extended itself to this cookie version from Cookies and Cups. Fudgy cookies are enrobed in Texas Fudge Cake frosting  to the same stupendous results. Little (or not so little) bites of fudgy goodness. The only cautionary note is please don't overbake these. If they puff and crack on top, they're overbaked and can be a little dry (I discovered that with the first batch). They're still salvageable because of the frosting but they're better a little underbaked so they remain moist and fudgy. The cookies aren't too sweet or overly chocolaty; that comes from the frosting. If you have high end baking chocolate (I used Tcho), use that instead of the regular Nestle chocolate chips; they're worth it. And, in keeping with my rating scale, yes, I ate two cookies before giving the rest away to my friend Cindy when we met for dinner and to my coworkers the next day. Cindy asked me for the recipe so my taste rating scale remains intact.
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, melted and lukewarm

1/2 cup butter
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
3 tablespoons milk
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  3. In bowl of stand mixer, beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, scraping down sides of mixing bowl frequently.
  4. Add in egg and vanilla and mix until incorporated. Mix in baking powder and salt.
  5. With mixer on low, slowly add in flour. Mix in melted chocolate chips until evenly incorporated.
  6. Drop dough in tablespoon-sized mounds onto baking sheet. Bake for 7-9 minutes until cookies just appear set. Do not overbake. Cool on wire racks.
  1. In a medium saucepan combine butter, cocoa powder, and milk over medium heat, whisking until smooth. Remove from heat and whisk in powdered sugar.
  2. Pour icing over cookies and allow to set before serving.

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