Your Ultimate Festive Chocolate Chip Cookie
Christmas has always been one of my favorite holidays and one of my favorite parts has always been making Christmas cut-outs with my mom. Now with 3 kids of my own, I’ve been anxious to start our own baking traditions. Year after year, I would try a new cut-out recipe and year after year my husband would shake his head and tell me he just didn’t like it. Are you serious, right now? Every year when I would ask him what kind of holiday cookie he wanted, he would request Chocolate Chip. But, for Christmas?? Yes, even for Christmas. Finally, I gave in, especially since I’ve found the perfect Chocolate Chip cookie recipe that can change colors and adapt to any holiday! You may remember this recipe from the Fourth of July – the Firecracker cookies. These are the same – I just swapped out the blue chocolate for green!
I would recommend reading the whole post for a little back story but if you just can’t stand it, here’s the recipe, right here! This is adapted from this original recipe.
The Colorful Debate
The original recipe calls for 3 different types of chocolate chips – a milk chocolate, bitter-sweet and semi-sweet. These cookies are going to be red, white and green for Christmas. I didn’t want to simply use sprinkles because while sprinkles are pretty, I don’t really feel like they taste like anything. You feel me on that? I also didn’t want to use red, white and green m&ms just because an m&m cookie isn’t my favorite – and I feel like it’s been done.
Then I remembered the assortment of Candy Melts available at Michaels. Whenever my mom and I would make chocolate covered pretzels at Christmas we would always get the Candy Melts from Michaels. Even if it’s just the white, something about these melts nicer and smoother than any chocolate you can pick up at the grocery store.
The awesome part? You can literally match these to almost any holiday or decor you can think up! And spoiler alert: it’s delicious!
Not Your Average Chocolate Chip
So obviously these disks are way too big as they are to go straight into cookies. I just wasn’t sure how to get them smaller.
I thought about a few pulses in my food processor but honestly thought it would be too annoying to have to clean the blade after chopping up chocolate.
Then I tried sticking them in a bag and rolling them with a rolling pin. All that did was put small spots of color on the white ones as you can see on some of these in the picture.
In the end, I dumped all of them on a cutting board together and roughly chopped them with a big ole knife. All different sizes is totally ok.
I did this as my first step to get it out of the way so that they were good and ready when I needed them.
The Mix and the Mash Up
So basically, you mix these up like you would any other cookie – you cream the sugars, add in the egg and the vanilla and then mix in the dry stuff just until incorporated. You know, standard cookie protocol.
The thing that I found confusing about the original recipe is that she tells you to chill the dough for 4 hours before making cookie mounds on your parchment paper. To me, this part is super hard because if you do chill the dough appropriately, you basically have to un-chill it so that you can scoop your cookies. Have you ever tried to scoop cold cookie dough? It’s hard!
Additionally, the original recipe called for 2 oz mounds but that seemed gigantic to me. What I like to do is use a round Tablespoon. Right after you’re done mixing everything, measure out your cookie mounds, or balls, whatever you want to call them. You can create a bit of a heaping measure – then scoop it out with your fingers, roll it into a quick ball. Try not to spend too much time on this – you don’t want to make the dough any warmer and softer than it already is.
Put all your cookie balls into a resealable bag or a Tupperware or something like that. It doesn’t matter if they are touching each other. THEN you chill that shit. 30 minutes, 4 hours, several days. You can even put some in the freezer at this point to make them last even longer. I actually like to bake mine in small batches if they are just cookies for us to have at home so that we don’t eat them all immediately. Because again, they are THAT delicious.
I believe this made 31 cookies for me the first time I made them. That is with sampling a bit, of course, to make sure it’s ok. And no, I’m not condoning eating raw cookie dough. You are a grown up. You know that raw eggs can give you salmonella. There are certain things I can’t resist in life and cookie dough is one of those things. Eat it at your own risk!
A New Way to Bake
What we are doing is overheating the oven and then as soon as the cookies go in, lowering the temperature. The original poster’s theory is that the higher temperature is somehow setting the cookie up to be thicker and chewier and all around more delicious. No hard crunchy cookies, here. Or cracker cookies as Nishant likes to call them.
I don’t know if it actually makes a difference or if it’s more like a bunch of woo woo stuff in your head but seriously these cookies are delicious.
So what I do is heat the oven to 425, put the cookies in, turn the oven off and then immediately turn it back on to 375. Bake for 9 minutes – cookies should be slightly brown on the tops. Take them out and let them cool on the cookie sheet. I mean, if you can stand it. Along with my cookie dough confession from earlier, you probably won’t be surprised that I always have to eat one when it’s hot and still falling apart.
If you’re baking more than one tray, I would heat the oven back up to 425 so you can properly start the whole thing over again.
The End Result
My main concern in all of this was that the candy melts just wouldn’t hold up. Since they are made for melting and molding, I was afraid that they would just ooze all over the place in a hot, sticky mess.
But, what we had here folks, according to Nishant, was absolute perfection. Your sweet tooth and your celebrations may never be the same! They hardened back up just right.
You may find that this recipe is a little too sweet. Again, our sweet tooth is such that we find it to be perfect but you could easily add some sort of nut in here to help with that. The natural and expected progression here would be a macadamia nut due to all the white chocolate but you could also do a walnut, pecan, anything really. I was also considering dusting them with just a tiny bit of salt before baking. I haven’t tried it yet, though, so do so at your own risk. If you make these, I absolutely must know about how they turned out – let me know!
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