So since my last post, our littlest cakelet, Neve Winter (aka Lovie) turned 3. How is this possible, you ask? And that just yesterday she was a baby, you say, celebrating her very first birthday? And that I just posted this wee cake for her 2nd birthday? I know–it’s kooky the way time flies. Well, it’s true and what a curious, hilarious and lovie-licious little cakelet she has become. You might have noticed that she’s all me (sorry, Grant!) and even though I’m only 25% Irish, I can’t help but sense she’s a true Irish cakelet–everything from the hair to her humour, she’s got so much of my mom’s side of the family in her. Here are a few images from the past 3 years that I feel really capture her:
Sweet, sensitive, mysterious, mischievous, happy and humorous — that’s our Neve. ♥
When it was time to decide what birthday treats to make for her, of course my first instinct was cake (which I did do a few days after because, let’s be honest, birthday cake isn’t optional), but the truth is I am literally always making cake with the girls, and so albeit backwards, I felt that for her actual birthday, perhaps a real treat would be something we rarely make: decadent cookies.
Now the thing about Neve’s birthday is that it happened to be the same week as Reese’s first week in Senior Kindergarten and first day of ballet class, so there was a lot of excitement twirling, whirling and swirling around the house. I wanted to make a special treat that would make both of them happy, and Reese suggested “super chocolaty cookies with chocolate chips,” and Neve decided they should be “really sprinkly.”
Done, and done.
So we made super fudgy chocolate cookies using Callebaut melted bittersweet chocolate callets, Cacao Barry Extra Dark cocoa powder and more bittersweet chocolate callets, butter, brown sugar, pure vanilla and more, and then we made a quick and easy dark chocolate glaze using more butter and chocolate. Finally, we covered them in a sprinkle medley and edible gold stars. Everybody wins!
Neve had a few mini birthday celebrations filled with family, chocolate, sprinkles, cookies . . .
Birthday morning fairy bread . . .
And one seriously chocolate cake a few days later while she and her Grandpa celebrated their birthdays together (recipe to follow!).
These cookies are certainly decadent with their rich, fudgy, chocolaty, gooey, crunchy, sprinkly-ness, but I won’t lie–I love how quick and easy they are to make. ♥
Happy Birthday to our little cakelet, and Happy Weekend to you!
Here’s the recipe:
- 1-1/2 cups 280 grams quality bittersweet (extra dark) chocolate, chopped
- 3 tablespoons 45 grams unsalted butter
- 1 cup 215 grams light brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon 2.5 ml pure vanilla extract
- 1-1/2 cups 200 grams all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons 15 grams Dutch-processed dark cocoa powder (I use Cacao Barry Extra Brute)
- 1/2 teaspoon 2.5 grams baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon 3 grams sea salt
- 3/4 cup 140 grams quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 tablespoons 30 grams unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon 5 ml light corn syrup
- Sprinkles of choice
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or a Silpat baking mat.
Place 1 cup of the chocolate and the butter in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan of an inch of simmering (not boiling) water, stirring occasionally until melted and smooth. Meanwhile, sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.
In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or handheld mixer), beat the sugar, eggs and vanilla on medium speed, until well-combined. Add the chocolate mixture and beat until combined. Reduce mixer speed to low, and gradually add the dry mixture until everything is incorporated, occasionally scraping sides of bowl with a rubber spatula. Stir in remaining chocolate pieces/chips.
Using two spoons or cookie scoop, drop 12 equal amounts onto baking sheet. Be sure to space them a few inches apart to allow for spreading in the oven. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until tops have a cracked appearance. (Be sure to not over-bake, or cookies will be dry and not fudgy.) Allow to cool on baking sheet on wire rack for 15 minutes, and then gently transfer cookies to rack to cool completely.
Place chocolate, butter and corn syrup in a medium heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of an inch of simmering (not boiling) water until melted and smooth, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
Line a baking sheet or tray with wax paper (or parchment or baking mat) and fill a medium plate or bowl with sprinkles of choice.
Dip each cooled cookie into the glaze so that half of the cookie is glazed and then holding the cookie over sprinkle bowl drop a handful of sprinkles over glaze and shake off excess. Place each one on prepared sheet until you have decorated all of them, and then place sheet/tray in the freezer or refrigerator for 10-15 minutes to set.
[cookie dough adapted from Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook]
- Since the chocolate is the star of this show, I recommend using the best quality bittersweet chocolate possible. I used Callebaut Dark Callets 70.4 % , because I love the flavour, and the callets (chips) are so easy to melt and measure. If bittersweet is too dark for your taste, I recommend using it for the cookies, but using semisweet for the glaze.
- For measuring cookie dough and placing on the baking sheet, I always use this 50mm Cookie Scoop–perfectly round and even cookies every time, which I love. I also swear by the Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mat, but just note that they are a tiny bit too big for some cookie sheets. You want to make sure you have what they call a Bakers Half Sheet. I use these for everything!
- For the sprinkles on my cookies, I used Rainbow Jimmies + Chocolate Vermicelli mixed together prior to coating the cookies and then sprinkled edible Gold Stars on afterwards. This is also the method I used for the birthday fairy bread–sprinkled it right on top of buttered toast. ♥
Good luck & enjoy!