Saturday, 25 June 2016

Chocolate, Hazelnut & Ginger Cookies

They're classic American cookies, the crispy kind, like those simple, welcoming chocolate chip cookies.  This is a version with my favorite flavors.  They remind me of my high school friend's mother.  American cookies in general.  She was Malaysian, and what a cook, with a repertoire that stretched from curried chicken to fried noodles and chocolate cakes.  And my generous friend, YC, always brought boxes of her mom's baked goods to share with us ravenous teenagers.  I recalled her brownies in particular: decadent, rich fudgy brownies with that crisp top.  When I asked YC for her mom's magical brownie recipe, she said it was from Betty Crocker - a ready mix - all this time her mother was just mixing some egg and water into a bowl along with the contents of a commercialized box - and I had never felt so cheated before.

 In her mother's defense, yes she never claimed that it was her own recipe or that she had made them from scratch.  I was a bit heartbroken, as I just had this image of this selfless woman work herself away for her daughter and her friends.  I don't think my mother ever used a mix before for any of her desserts.  But then I started baking with Betty Crocker mixes myself.  It would be another few years before I properly started cooking. 

PS: to YC's mother, on the off chance that you get to read this some day, thank you nonetheless for all that you've baked, I'm sure your cookies were from scratch.  Along with your curries and the countless meals I had had the pleasure of eating at your house.

Recipe adapted from Food52 
Makes about 20 cookies
Ingredients
8 tbsp/113g butter, melted
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 egg
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, skinned and roughly chopped
1/2 cup candied ginger, chopped
1/2 cup dark chocolate chunks

Method
Heat the oven to 350F/180C and grease and line a large baking tray

Mix the whole wheat flour, oats, salt and baking soda in a large bowl and side aside.

In another bowl beat the egg with the sugars with a standing mixer with a whisk attachment or just standard electric beaters for a couple of minutes until it's voluminous.

 Stir in the melted butter and then the flour mixture.  Lastly gently fold in the hazelnuts, candied ginger and dark chocolate.

Place about 2 tbsp of dough per cookie on the greased baking tray, place the cookies a few cm apart and flatten them slightly.  Bake for about 12 minutes or until golden, rotating them halfway through.  Leave to cool to crisp up. 

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