Chocolate Pretzel Cookies

September 2, 2009

chocolatepretzelspread2

My family was going to our friends’ house for dinner, so I got the task of making dessert.  My favorite task!  I love having an occasion to bake, because that means what I make is much more likely to be eaten.  When you’re in a house full of healthy eaters and you decide to make cookies on a Wednesday night, they unfortunately go to waste.  However, nobody had any problem eating these.  We all loved them.  They tasted delicious and looked beautiful!

These were a bunch of fun to play with.  I brushed them all with egg yolk, and sprinkled sugar over some, and pretzel salt over others.  To be really fancy, I dipped a few first in chocolate and then into sprinkles, coconut, almonds, or crushed pretzels (that would make pretzel covered chocolates, just so you know! =p).  I think these would be absolutely delicious with peppermint extract during Christmas, or with cinnamon for a kind of unique flavor.  They’re easy and fun to make, and are a terrific blank canvas for experimenting.

Oh, and also, the frozen cookie dough tastes like fudge.  Not that I would ever eat copious amounts of unbaked cookie dough…

chocoltepretzelribbon

Chocolate Pretzel Cookies

Adapted (only slightly) from Not Derby Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 sticks butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 oz. good quality chocolate (or about 60 chocolate chips)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • (1 egg yolk, for brushing)

Directions:

  1. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or with an electric mixer, whip butter until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add sugars and whip until incorporated, 2 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, melt chocolate over double boiler. (I always use a glass bowl over a saucepan with a little water in the bottom.  I’m cheap!)  Let chocolate cool slightly before step 5.
  4. Add egg, vanilla and salt; mix until combined, about 20 seconds.
  5. Add chocolate; mix until combined, about 30 seconds, on low speed.
  6. Sift together cocoa, flour, and baking powder and add. Mix on low speed until completely blended, about two minutes or less.
  7. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 2 hours, or freeze for 45 minutes.
  8. Remove dough from fridge/freezer. Slice into 18 chunks, or less, or more, depending how big you want your pretzels.
  9. roll into 10-inch logs, about 1/3-1/2 an inch thick.
    DO NOT do roll them all out before shaping, because they’ll get stiff and crack when you try to shape them. Shape as you go!  I’d work with half the dough at a time and keep the other half in the freezer, especially if it’s summer.
  10. Take the edges in your hand, bring them together, and twist them twice, leaving the tips dangling. (Visit Not Derby Pie for great pictures of this.)
  11. Bring the twist down onto the rounded pretzel, stick the tips to the pretzel, and transfer to a non-stick or lined baking sheet.
  12. Brush with a very light coat of egg yolk mixed with water and sprinkle with rock sugar, pretzel salt, or cinnamon sugar if you desire.
  13. Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes, until they’ve just begun to harden.
  14. Move delicately from baking sheet onto cooling rack, and allow to cool completely before serving. (Don’t let that stop you from trying one…or two.)

For dipping about half the batch:

1. Melt about 1/2 cup of chocolate chips over the double broiler.

2. While chocolate is hot, dip in FULLY COOLED cookies (freeze for a short time before if necessary).

3.  Next, dip cookies in sprinkles, crushed pretzels, coconut, almonds, or anything else you can possibly think of.

4.  Let cool on wax paper.  Yum.

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