Touted as cookies that are so good a daily dose could bring about world peace and happiness, these Dorie Greenspan cookie are chocolately, moreish and a perfect thank you gift.
Dorie originally called these "Korova Cookies" after the restaurant in Paris they were originally created for by Pierre Hermes, but I think the current name is definitely more evocative...and accurate.
They are dark, rich and delicately crumbly with bursts of chocolate and sea salt. They are so good, it's difficult to stop yourself from eating an entire batch from the oven. So good, it's criminal not to make a double batch. So good in fact, that they do indeed make the world a better place.
I recently went through a massive change in direction. I started a post-graduate course at uni in science after working at a law firm for a year but was really unhappy and realised that what I wanted to do all along was medicine. So, the last couple of months have been a bit of a rollercoaster ride working out how to fulfil that dream but it's something I'm really really passionate about and am pouring my heart and soul into.
Throughout the whole process, I've had such amazing support from everyone, and in particular a number of wonderful people at the university who have been battling for me the whole way. It is really so so humbling to have these generous and amazing people who believe in you and go out of their way to help you when you are down and out.
I had joked that if we manage to pull this whole medicine thing off, we should try achieve world peace next. So now that we have gotten over the first hurdle, I wanted to make something as little thank you's for the people who had helped me this far, and these cookies immediately sprang to mind.
World Peace Cookies
adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan.
This recipe makes a double batch so around 60 - 70 cookies.
2 1/2 cups flour
2/3 cup dark cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
300 g unsalted butter, softened
1 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp sea salt or fleur de sel (1/2 tsp if using normal salt)
2 tsp vanilla
300 g dark chocolate, cut into chunks
Sift flour, cocoa and baking soda into a bowl (or onto a sheet of baking paper).
Beat butter until fluffy. Add both types of sugars, salt and vanilla and beat for two minutes.
Add the sifted flour mixture and beat until just mixed. Add chocolate and mix through.
Tear off a large sheet of plastic wrap (like Gladwrap or clingfilm) and place on top of a chopping board.
Roughly guestimate how much a quarter of the mixture is and tip out on to the plastic wrap.
Using the wrap, form the mixture into a log shape about 4 cm in diameter by rolling and twisting the ends. I found the mixture to be quite crumbly and had to work it a little to get it to stick together. Repeat until you have 4 logs.
At this point you can put them in the fridge and chill for at least 3 hours (and up to 3 days) before baking. Or place them in the freezer. They will keep for around 2 months in the freezer. Other recipes say that you can bake them straight out of the freezer but I find the log is a little too brittle to cut into when frozen so I take my wee logs out of the freezer and let them sit on the bench for around 30 minutes before cutting and baking.
To bake: preheat the oven to 160oC and line two baking sheets with baking paper.
Slice the log into 1 cm thick slices and arrange the discs on the baking sheet around 1 inch apart. If the cookie cracks when you are slicing into the log just squeeze it back together with your hands or put the bits on top of each other on the tray (the bits will melt into each other as they are baking to form a cookie).
Bake for 12 minutes. Leave the cookies on the tray for around 2 minutes then transfer to a wire cooling rack.
And the most difficult part of this recipe: try not to eat the entire batch when they come out of the oven. They are pretty darn good hot but I reckon they're at their best when they've cooled down, coz then you get the crumbly almost shortbready texture.
The cookies will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Or freeze them in between sheets of baking paper for up to 2 months.