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Sunday, November 24, 2013

CHOCOLATE BLOOMS (CHRISTMAS COOKIES)

Remember when I said I was looking for new Christmas cookie recipes that were other than chocolate?  Do you realize how few there are out there?  So look what I made?
If you are a regular reader, the lemon cookies are still in the running to become the new "rookie" for my 2013 Christmas cookie team!

These are called Chocolate Blooms (recipe from Better Homes and Gardens):

RECIPE:

  • ½ cup shortening (I used butter flavored Crisco)
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1 cup miniature semi-sweet chocolate pieces
  • ¾ cup finely chopped almonds (optional)
  • Raspberry Ganache
DIRECTIONS:
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, beat shortening and butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds.  Add brown sugar, baking powder, and salt; beat until combined.  Beat in egg and vanilla; beat until combined.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour and cocoa powder.  Beat as much of the flour mixture into the butter mixture as you can with a mixer. Stir in any remaining flour mixture.  Stir in chocolate pieces.  Shape dough into 1" balls; roll balls into chopped almonds.  Place 1½" apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Press thumb into the center of each ball to make an indentation.
  3. Bake in a pre-heated oven for 8-10 minutes or until edges are set.  Immediately use the rounded side of a ½ teaspoon measure to press down the center of each cookie.  Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.  Spoon raspberry ganache into center of each cookie.  Let stand for 1-2 hours.   
*These cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months.  

RASPBERRY GANACHE:
  • 6 ounces chopped (70% cocoa) dark chocolate
  • 1/3 cup whipping cream
  • 1 Tbsp. seedless raspberry jam (I added about 1/2 tsp. more)
The instructions said you could melt this in the microwave on 100% power for 1 minute.  Didn't work for me; so I opted to pour everything into a saucepan and over very low heat, I melted it that way until very smooth.  Let stand until thickened (about 15 minutes).  Spoon into the cookies.
My rating 7.5 out of 10....you decide. 

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