After teasing on FB with a photo on National Cookie Day (December 6), I thought it was only fair to share the recipe for these decadent treats. If you’ve read other posts, you know I like recipes with flexibility. Minty (or not) cookies can be labeled as such. Obviously, peppermint extract and/or Mint Truffle Hershey’s Kisses will result in minty cookies. But think of the possibilities if you make the rich chocolate cookie dough with just vanilla extract or sub other extract flavors for the mint and change the candy topper. Here are just a few suggestions:
Almond Extract + Kisses with Almonds
Cherry Extract + Cherry Cordial Kisses
Mix a teaspoon of cinnamon with the powdered sugar + Chocolate Caramel Kisses
Orange Extract + Birthday Cake Kisses
You get the idea…
1 ½ cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
¾ cup Dutch-process cocoa
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
4 ounces (½ cup) unsalted butter
1 ¼ cups sugar
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon peppermint extract OR sub additional vanilla extract for “not-minty” cookies
1 cup powdered sugar for coating
Hershey’s Kisses – Special Dark, Mint Truffle, Hot Cocoa…or choose your favorite. There are so many varieties, especially at holiday time!
Bring butter to room temperature.
Line cookie sheets with parchment; set aside.
Unwrap Kisses and place them in a bowl; set aside.
Sift powdered sugar into a flat (pasta-like) bowl; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar in mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time; add vanilla and peppermint (if using) extracts, beating until combined and scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
Gradually add the flour mixture, beating on low just until combined. The dough will be very sticky. Cover the bowl tightly with film wrap and place in the refrigerator; chill for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Note: Chilling is important for the dough flavors to meld and to prevent the cookies from spreading too much when they bake. If the dough becomes too firm to scoop, place the covered dough on the counter for a few minutes and check regularly.
PREHEAT OVEN to 350 degrees F while the dough is chilling.
For uniform size, use a cookie scoop* to divide the dough. Gently roll each ball of dough through the bowl of powdered sugar until heavily coated. Place on the parchment-lined cookie sheet.
*I use my #50 scoop for a 2-bite cookie or #100 for cookies just a little larger. In the photo above, #50 (center) has comparable volume to the Tablespoon measure on the right.
Bake in preheated oven for 8 – 8 ½ minutes, until puffed and crinkly. DO NOT OVERBAKE! You can always add a minute or two if needed, but if the cookies are firm when they come out of the oven, they will likely be dry and crumbly when you eat them. This cookie should be chewy like a soft brownie.
Remove from the oven and immediately press a Hershey’s Kiss on top of each hot cookie, making an imprint in the center. Let the cookies sit on the sheet for 1-2 minutes, then remove to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
Hint: If you want a yummy photograph of your cookies, the best time to catch that glossy chocolate kiss is while the cookies are still warm, just before moving them to the cooling rack.