There are some recipes that, when you find them, you have to make them immediately. This was one of those recipes for me. Rich chocolate cookies rolled in a decadent coating of crushed candy canes? Count me in!
I love this time of year. I love decorating the house for Christmas, I adore putting up the Christmas tree, I love the excitement of buying presents for the ones I love, and I get such a kick out of being able to bake cookies to my heart’s content. These delicious little numbers kicked off the Christmas cookie season for me, and they were perfect for the job. Chocolate and peppermint together are the flavor of Christmas, in my mind. These cookies definitely rock the chocolate-peppermint thing, and they’ve got a great, almost brownie-like texture to boot. I’ll definitely be adding these to my Christmas repertoire. (The list of cookies I must bake each Christmas keeps growing longer, but that’s not a bad thing, right?)
One note about these cookies: I had a terrible time getting them off my Silpats while they were warm – they just shredded and crumpled up. There was a problem with the candy canes melting onto the Silpat and sticking, even though Silpats are supposed to be stick-resistant. You might have better luck with parchment paper. My solution was to let the cookies cool completely on the cookie sheets before attempting to move them.
Candy Cane Crunch Chocolate Cookies
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup canola oil
4 ounces 99% unsweetened chocolate, melted (I used 2 oz unsweeted and 2 oz bittersweet)
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
5 candy canes-crushed up (I ended up needing a lot more than 5!)
1. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the oil, chocolate and granulated sugar and blend on medium speed. With the mixer running, add the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary. There may be some small clumps of sugar in the batter at this point. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed, stopping once to scrape down the sides. Mix until just incorporated, 2 to 3 minutes. The dough will be sticky.
3. Gather the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.
4. Position the racks in the lower and upper thirds of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with Silpats or parchment paper.
5. Pour the crushed candy canes onto a plate or into a shallow bowl. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls and roll each ball into the candy cane pieces, so that all sides are covered. Place 2 inches apart on the prepared sheets.
6. Bake for 10 minutes for soft, chewy cookies, or 12 minutes for crisp cookies, rotating the pans halfway through baking. The cookies do set up, so if you want them soft, take them out at 10 minutes. Let cool completely on cooling racks. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for 3 to 4 days.