Have you ever had great expectations for a recipe, and then had those expectations dashed dramatically? That happened to me the other day when I set out to make these cookies. I had an image in my head of what they should look like, and the resulting cookie was, visually speaking, dramatically opposite to what I had set out to make. In fact, these cookies - while delectable and fudgy - were possibly the ugliest cookies I had ever made. They were so unappealing in appearance, that I briefly wondered if I should start a "Cookie Wrecks" site.
We train our kids, and ourselves, to look past physical appearances. Never judge a book by its cover! we tell the kids, and It's what's INSIDE that counts. Well, beauty may be found within, but when it comes to beastly ugly cookies, no one is interested in finding it. Think about it: if gorgeously decorated cookies sat on a platter side by side to brown, doughy-looking lumps, which one would you choose? I am very confident you would not choose the lump.
Necessity is the mother of invention, and ugly cookies necessitate a topping of sorts. I sadly looked at my three dozen lumps when it occurred to me: chocolate glaze! There is nary a cookie that doesn't perk up in appearance - and taste - with a coating of chocolate glaze. The result: a fudgy, brownie-like cookie with a wonderful chocolate coating. It may be what's inside that counts, but when it comes to cookies, being good-looking is a definite bonus.
Cream together coconut oil and powdered sugar. Add the flax "egg" (or large egg) and vanilla extract, and mix well.
Add cocoa powder, flour, and salt and mix until just combined.
Cover with plastic wrap and chill for two hours or overnight. NOTE: to expedite the process, put the dough in the freezer for 15-20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Roll dough into 1-inch balls and place on prepared baking sheets. Bake for 7 minutes. Allow to cool completely.
To make the glaze, melt together semi-sweet or dark baking chocolate and coconut oil. Mix in powdered sugar and water until the glaze is smooth. OPTIONAL: add peppermint extract for a festive treat.
Working quickly, drizzle by teaspoonful onto the cooled cookies.
We are entering the festive season, and you know what that means: parties, parties, parties! It seems like there is something going on every weekend leading up to Christmas: open houses, dinners, and let us not forget the social whirl that comes with children's activities.
I don't know about you, but I hate arriving at a party empty-handed. A bottle of wine is always an acceptable (and loved!) hostess gift, but that can get expensive at this busy time of year. Why not try a homemade gift from your kitchen instead?
This dark chocolate bark is one of my favourite hostess gifts. It also makes a great teacher gift, birthday gift, sorry-you're-feeling-sad gift, congratulations-on-your-new-job gift, and your-new-baby-is-so-cute-here-eat-this-while-I-sniff-its-head gift. In other words, it's perfect for every occasion. The best part is that it takes FIVE MINUTES to put together, and you can customize the ingredients to the recipient's taste. Depending on the type of chocolate and the ingredients you choose, it can be vegan, gluten-free, and/or nut-free. It just doesn't get any better than that!
Line a baking sheet or pizza pan with parchment paper.
In the microwave, melt the chocolate chips, stirring every 30 seconds. Alternately, melt in the top of a double boiler, stirring often.
Stir in the dried blueberries and pumpkin seeds. Spread mixture evenly over prepared baking sheet.
Place baking sheet in the freezer for 30-60 minutes, until chocolate is firm.
Break chocolate into pieces, wrap in cellophane or put in festive tin, and get to that party!
Other Combinations To Try
The humble ingredients await!
The gooey melted chocolate.
Mix in the additions of choice, and then spread on the parchment paper sheet. Freeze for an hour and then...
Breaking up is hard to do! Not really. It's quite easy. What's not easy is not eating it all immediately.
Want more easy and delicious hostess gifts? Try my Dark Chocolate Peppermint Bark, my Decadent Dark Chocolate Truffles, or my Easy Peppermint Fudge. Got a Bailey's lover who can't have dairy? Try my Homemade Dairy-Free Bailey's.