29 August 2013

Chocolate rum-raisin cookies

Delicious, delicious chocolate. Oh, oh my. You know, sometimes, a girl has to eat chocolate. And when there's no chocolate in the house, chocolate cookies made with the best cocoa you can find will just have to do!

Last night, as I was scouring the shelves of our cabinets trying to find something, anything chocolate related, I happened upon a very old bar of rum-raisin chocolate. Old, as in, the packaging felt brittle. Yeah. How that managed to survive this long in our cupboard without being eaten, I have no idea. It certainly is a miracle, in this house. But it gave me an idea! I grabbed a bottle of rum, a bowl of raisins, and made rum-soaked raisins to go into a fluffy, soft, pillowy chocolate cookie.

This chocolate cookie base is based off a recipe by The Pioneer Woman, my go-to website for comfort food recipes, and I think you could add practically anything that even remotely goes with chocolate, like nuts, other dried fruits, oatmeal, more chocolate... I was thinking of trying these with mocha beans, the sharp coffee flavour would be excellent in combination with the full, rich chocolate cookie base.

Oh man... I might have to get a box of mocha beans now.

Chocolate rum-raisin cookies
Makes about 18, depending on size

You will need:

- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- enough dark rum to cover
- 1/2 cup rum raisins

If you want to soak your raisins yourself, put them in a bowl and cover them with the rum. Let sit for at least 24 hours. If you're in a hurry, you could try my method: Put your raisins in a bowl with a lid, cover with the rum, and close the lid. Then put the bowl in a larger bowl filled with hot water from the tap and let it sit for as long as possible. When you're ready to add them to your dough, drain them off and pat dry with paper towels. They won't have the punch of real rum raisins, but there will be a definite aftertaste!

- 140 grams of softened butter
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 6 tablespoons of cocoa
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt

Preheat your oven to 175 °C and prepare a cookie sheet with baking paper or a baking mat.

Cream together your butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla extract and stir well until combined.
In a different bowl, mix your flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Sift it into your wet ingredients in batches and stir each time until just combined.
Drain your raisins if necessary and fold them into the batter.
Drop tablespoon-sized heaps of batter onto your baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies seem just set. Allow to cool for a few minutes on the sheet before transferring them to a cooling rack to further cool down. Be careful when transferring them, the cookies are pretty delicate!