Thursday, February 13, 2020

Chocolate and Orange Slice & Bake Cookies

I had planned to make these cookies right before the holidays, but it didn’t work out that way. I made them more recently, and of course they’re not specifically seasonal. That being said, I’m sure they’d be really good with blood oranges as well. We all enjoyed them.

Note that the logs of dough can be refrigerated or frozen, as can the baked and dipped cookies (the latter may be more practical, as it allows you to melt all that chocolate only once). I made these with dark chocolate, but milk chocolate or white chocolate would be good as well. I also flaky sea salt as decoration; leftover orange zest would have been great too as long as the cookies had been refrigerated until eaten, or I could have used more coarse sugar.

¾ cup lactose-free butter or margarine, softened to room temperature
2/3 cup (133 g.) packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 cups + 2 Tbsp. (266 g.) all-purpose flour
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. salt
zest from 1 medium navel orange (plus more for sprinkling on top if desired)
2 Tbsp. orange juice, from 1 medium navel orange
coarse sugar for rolling (optional, but recommended; I used turbinado)
8 oz. (226 g.) semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
sea salt and/or more coarse sugar, for sprinkling on top (optional)

In a large bowl, using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and beat on medium high speed until fluffy and creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla extract on high speed. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed and continue to beat until fully combined.

In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, cinnamon, and salt together until combined. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined. The cookie dough will be thick and slightly sticky. Switch to high speed and beat in the orange zest and fresh orange juice. Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and, with floured hands, divide into two. Shape each half into an 8-inch log, about 2.5 inches in diameter (the measurements don’t have to be exact). Tightly wrap the logs in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours and up to 5 days.

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.

Remove logs from the refrigerator and roll into coarse sugar, if desired. It’s added only for a little crunch, but it’s such a nice touch! Slice each log into 12 equally thick cookies and place cookies on baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes or until brown around the edges. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet, then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

Melt the chopped chocolate in a double boiler. Dip each completely cooled cookie halfway into the chocolate and place onto a parchment or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, sea salt and orange zest (if desired). Place the baking sheet into the refrigerator to help the chocolate set. Once set, enjoy!

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