Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Double Chocolate Cookies

These are my favorite cookies at the moment. They are easy to make, quick to make, and delicious. Not only that, but they keep—and thus ship—well. However, don't even think about compromising on the quality of chocolate you use. That specified is my favorite eating chocolate, and it's perfect for this recipe.

Makes 32

¾ cup butter
1 cup granulated sugar plus ¼ cup or more for rolling 
2 eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon baking powder 
1 teaspoon baking soda 
¼ teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
½ cup cocoa 
2 cups all-purpose flour 
3.5-oz. bar Lindt 70% Cocoa Excellence, roughly chopped into ¼- to ½-inch pieces 

In a medium, microwave-safe mixing bowl, melt butter. 

Stir in 1 cup sugar. 

Beat in eggs, one at a time. 

Add baking powder, baking soda, salt, and vanilla and stir well. 

Stir in cocoa. 

Add flour and chopped chocolate and stir until flour no longer shows and chocolate is distributed evenly. 

Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes but not too much longer. 

Roll the dough into 1-inch balls so that each ball has at least one chocolate chunk, which should be covered with dough. 

Put the remaining sugar in a shallow bowl. Roll each ball in sugar to coat. 

Place the balls about 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake in 350°F. oven for 8 minutes. 

Cool the cookies on the baking sheet until firm, about 5 minutes. Then transfer the cookies to a wire rack. 

NOTE: Even on an insulated baking sheet, these take only 8 minutes to bake.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Bourbon Chicken


Serves 4

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, about 1.5 lbs. total
½ cup plus 1 teaspoon bourbon, divided
4 medium-sized shallots, minced
¾ teaspoon crumbled dried thyme, or to taste
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
½ cup whipping cream

1.   In a large skillet, heat butter and oil over moderately high heat.
2. Pat chicken dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
3. Brown chicken on both sides in hot fat.
4. Add ¼ cup bourbon to skillet and ignite it, shaking the skillet until the flames go out.
5. Remove the chicken to a plate. Add shallots and cook them for 1 minute.
6. Stir in the thyme, parsley, and ¼ cup bourbon.
7. Return chicken to skillet, cover, and cook over medium-low heat, turning occasionally, for 25 minutes, or until the juices run clear when pricked with a fork.
8. Transfer chicken to heated serving dish.
9. Add cream to skillet and simmer sauce, stirring, until it is thickened slightly.
10. Add remaining 1 teaspoon bourbon as well as salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and serve.

NOTE: Easy, elegant recipe. Delicious served with rice and a green vegetable such as broccoli or Brussels sprouts.
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