February 1, 2012
I had been craving a batch of chocolately homemade cookies for quite some time. Unbelievably, I don’t think I’ve made any cookies since the summer, so the craving turned into obsession and I could no longer ignore it. I flipped through the big, fat and beautiful Bon Appetit: Desserts, looking for a cookie recipe I’ve never tried and that didn’t have any ingredients I didn’t already have in the house. The winner was the Chocolate Toffee Cookies, which I adapted into what is now Chocolate-Cinnamon Caramel Cookies.
I made a few changes to the cookies. We fortunately had a little bottle of rum we had been sipping from that evening, so I splashed the 1 tablespoon of rum the recipe called for in the batter. When I turned my back, Soli generously threw in another tablespoon or so more. This made for a definite hit of rum with every cookie…I was actually a bit nervous eating one of these things for breakfast (What? I know everyone eats cookies for breakfast sometimes!).
I didn’t have any Skor or Heath bars, but I did have these super tiny chocolate-covered caramel cup chips…I can’t really think of a better way to describe them. They were a great addition, I think! The cookies didn’t have that crunch that I’m sure the Heath bar would’ve given it, but were instead studded with soft pockets of sweet, luscious caramel and dark chocolate. I didn’t add the nuts either, so the cookies were soft and moist the whole way through, with a slightly crispy edge. The texture was just amazing, and I don’t know if I would’ve even wanted any crunches to disrupt that.
The last thing I did differently, and that I wholeheartedly recommend, is adding a little bit of cinnamon to the cookies. I didn’t add so much that the cinnamon became a dominant flavor; in fact, some people who tried the cookie couldn’t quite place what it was they were tasting. I thought it pushed the cookie over the edge, making it change from super-great cookie to a super-great-amazing-favourite-cookie-ever. How can a soft, tender chocolate, cookie, filled with caramel and hints of rum and cinnamon be anything short of perfection?
Chocolate-Cinnamon Caramel Cookies
adapted from Bon Appetit: Desserts
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups mini chocolate covered caramels (the original recipe calls for crushed chocolate-covered English toffee, such as Heath, Skor bar; about 7 ounces)
1/2 cup chopped almonds (optional; I did not add any nuts this time)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Beat the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy.
3. Add the egg, the rum and the vanilla and beat again, until everything is blended together.
4. In a small bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Stir the dry ingredients into the butter mixture.
5. Stir in the chocolates or toffee and nuts, if using.
6. In large spoonfuls, drop batter into an ungreased baking sheet about two inches apart. Bake for about 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies start cracking on top but are still soft.
7. Let them cool on the baking sheet for 1 minute, then place the cookies in a rack to cool completely.
Makes about 3 dozen cookies
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