Saturday, 8 March 2008

So Outrageous, It's The Rage

Chocolate. Probably the best invention in the world, ever. Except maybe the internet. Whoever introduced chocolate to the Earth (I'm thinking maybe the Aztecs?) deserves a knighthood, or a large sack of gold, or maybe one of these cookies.

Only one, though.

I'm trying desperately to think of ways to fully express the chocolate hit of these cookies, and the fudgy, brownie-like texture, and the chunks of sweet, milk chocolate spread throughout... and nothing I can think of really does them justice. I'm, to be honest, not much of a cookie eater (I prefer cake XD) but across the bottom of print-out of this recipe, I have scrawled in giant, black felt-pen capital letters 'THESE ARE GODLY', underlined it twice, and drawn a huge, lopsided heart beneath it.

Probably you get the idea.

The recipe for this is from Bake Or Break, but I had to change it quite a bit as the recipe conversion flummoxed me. Yeah, I can handle the quantities, but I had one, big problem - semi-sweet chocolate? The what?

In Britain, we have plain (dark) chocolate, milk chocolate, or white chocolate. Thassit. But one Google search later, I was sifting through realms of 'bittersweet', and 'dark' and 'semi-sweet' and (most confusingly) 'baking' chocolate. I tried to narrow down my quest; the British equivalent of semi-sweet chocolate. Was it just milk chocolate?

Er, apparently not.

'Do not substitute milk chocolate for recipes that call for semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate' one site told me.

'you should never use a bittersweet chocolate if the recipe specifies semi-sweet or sweet' another ordered.

'Semi-sweet - plain (dark) chocolate.' The Recipe Corner tried to clear it up for me.

But then it added that it was apparently sweeter than bittersweet WHICH IS ALSO PLAIN CHOCOLATE. LE FUCK?

Apparently American plain (baking) chocolate is darker than British plain (dark) chocolate, and not something you'd eat on its own. I don't know if we have a British equivalent to that - just dark chocolate with higher cocoa solid level, maybe? So bittersweet chocolate is more like British plain/dark chocolate. Semi-sweet chocolate is somewhere between dark and milk chocolate, I think. 'Right,' I decided, 'I'll bloody well go halves'.

...A victory for my mad conversion skillz. But my head still aches.

Safe in the knowledge that almost 49% of my readers are actually British, I'm going to blame the Americans for this. Damn those Yanks!

Except not too much, because, uh, these are good cookies.

Outrageous Chocolate Cookies
Original recipe by Martha Stewart found here.
Makes 24 (but mine were too big and only made about 17)

100g milk chocolate, roughly chopped
125g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
55g unsalted butter
100g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs
100g light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
300g milk chocolate, chopped into chunks (I used 300g cause my milk choc comes in 200g bars, so it made sense to use two)

1. Preheat oven to 180C. Heat the 100g milk choc, the dark chocolate and the butter in a microwave safe bowl until almost melted, stirring together. In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt.

2. In a mixing bowl, beat eggs, brown sugar and vanilla on high speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low, and beat in the melted chocolate. Mix in flour mixture until just combined. Stir in chocolate chunks.

3. Drop smaaall tablespoons of dough 2-3 inches apart onto baking sheets. Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until cookies are shiny and crackly yet soft in the centres, 12-15 mins. Cool on sheets for ten mins, then transfer to racks to cool completely.

I made these for an evening out with my friends, and naturally I have too much self-control to eat two before then, so I'm afraid if you want pictures of the middle, you'll just have to--


Bloggers who made this:
17/03/08 Antonia at
Food, Glorious Food


Cakelaw said...

These cookies do look outrageously good. I'm with you on the types of chocolate thing - I mainly just use dark chocolate with 60-70% cocoa solids for baking, and it hasn't let me down yet.

Jules said...

Oh my goodness do these look good! Just looking at them is giving me an immense chocolate craving!

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who gets flummoxed by american recipes.

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eatme_delicious said...

Mmmm I saw these on Bake or Break and have been thinking about making them. Yours look delicious! I'm not a chocolate expert but as far as I understand it (this is a Canadian speaking) "baking" chocolate = unsweetened chocolate. And semisweet and bittersweet chocolate can vary in their sweetness so there isn't one standard. I think regular dark chocolate you would buy here would be between bittersweet and semisweet maybe. Anyway, you figured it out and made some very tasty and beautiful cookies!

Jessy and her dog Winnie said...

Lol. Thats wicked funny. Yeah, here in America, baking chocolate tastes nasty, kinda like chocolate dirt. But when your make brownies or something with it, it makes it good. Those cookies look amazing. They are definitely on my to bake list : )

Maria♥ said...

Indigo these cookies look so yummy, I love the soft centers. Btw I'm also with you on these american recipes, they love confusing the hell out of us!


Pixie said...

I honestly can't remember what semi sweet chocolate is or tastes like from the states. All I know is that I love 70% dark chocolate. Shame that reading recipes can cause so much confusion and their not all universal.

Btw Gorgeous cookies- I shall have to star this one!

Anonymous said...

Mmmm you had me a chocolate. The cookies look great!

Cakespy said...

In the war of Internet Versus Chocolate, it's apparent that some chocolate, like in these cookies, would have to rise above.

OH MY GOODNESS! They look like brownies and cookies and truffles all had a collective baby. Wowza!

Anonymous said...

Hey these do look outrageous. I never have enough cookie recipes, ecpecially chocolate ones. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

whoa, those look good.

american baking chocolate is a vile, vile perversion of chocolate. i usually use a callebaut 64% of my non-milk chocolate needs, and have no idea whether that's classified as semi, bitter or dark.

if i had to choose between chocolate and the internet, i think i would pick chocolate. after all, i managed to survive before the internet.

Helene said...

I love the way you curse!! The cookies look outrageously good...I hope they keep invadig blog so I can eat them vicarously through all of you. I know that if I make them they will be gone in 2 seconds!!

Gigi said...

Oh these look good! I have had them bookmarked for ever. After seeing yours I think I'll whip up batch. *drooling*

P.S. Thanks for the info on semi-sweet chocolate. I have a friend in Britain and her birthday is coming up soon. I'll think ...I'll send her box of various semi-sweet baking chocolates.

Abitofafoodie said...

I can tell that if I bake these cookies, I will never again use any other chocolate cookie recipe. They really do look superb - so fudgy. I shall definately be trying these out - in fact if I had the ingredients here right now, I'd be making them right now!

test it comm said...

Those chocolate cookies look so moist and chewy and good.

Anonymous said...

Oh. My. God. Those look insane. Must. Make.

Anna said...

Wheee, thanks so much to everyone for commenting (I would reply individually but I'm shockingly lazy XD). I'm relieved I'm not the only person who gets confused (even the Americans who commented don't seem too sure =P)

Eatme_delicious - thanks for the help! Yeah, it tasted perfect to me but I think using plain chocolate for the actual cookie and milk for the chunks would've been a good compromise. I'm a sweet junkie though, so I'll leave it.

Tartelette - no one has ever complimented my swearing before! I'm oddly chuffed over that ^__^

Jessie & Michelle - thanks for the info on baking chocolate; sounds like I'm not missing out, lol.

Cakespy - Perfect. Description. XD

Gigi - Great present idea!! If she's anything like me, she'll be insanely grateful for the chocolate-help, lol.

Thanks everyone!

Deborah said...

Regardless of the chocolate confusion, these cookies sound and look amazing!!

Brilynn said...

I drooled over these when I saw them on Bake or Break, I want them even more now!

Carlie said...

These cookies look soooo good. They look more like brownies, would you say that they are?

Anonymous said...

We Americans do enjoy our varying degrees of choclateness...(thats not a real word). Why have three kinds of chocolate when you can have a label for every degree of chocolate in the spectrum? Basically though, baking chocolate is the solid version of baking cocoa and oil. Its not edible on its own but makes a great chocolate base for brownies and cakes. Bittersweet is edible, dark, sweetened chocolate. Semisweet is sweeter than bittersweet but still considered a dark chocolate, what we use for chocolate chip cookies in the U.S.. And milk is the lightest most common eating chocolate. Most chocolate dipped anything and candy bars are made with milk chocolate.

Rosie said...

Oh my goodness what outrageously divine cookies!! I always have a chocolate craving and these would just hit that feeling right NOW!!

Rosie x

Anonymous said...

I don't think there is anything more delicious then a chocolate cookie fresh out of the oven and still a little bit warm! Mmmm

Anonymous said...

Van Houten sells baking chocolate - I just saw it on the shelves, bought it, never noticed a difference when I used it. I'm making these today, yours have tempted me so much that I have to have them! Just hope that mine turn out half as good as yours. Cheers! :D

tara said...

We made these cookies as part of the welcome package for the guests at our wedding; and they're still discussed with reverence! They are now part of my Christmas baking, and the most-requested recipe for gifts. To make things even more confusing for you, I use bittersweet for the batter, and semisweet for the chunks - and add a bit of espresso. I'm not a Yank, but I am a Canadian!

Anna said...

Thanks everyone!

Carlie - yeah, they're fudgier than regular cookies; kind of like a hybrid of the two ^__^

Anonymous - thankyou SO much for all that! That's going to save me so much trouble translating the next chocolate recipe, lol.

PBag - ooh, hope you enjoy them! XD

Tara - aw, that's so cool! Yeah, my friends always love my baking, but I think these were a particular hit XD. I know a few people who would love the expresso addition, but I'm not a coffee drinker so those would have to be for presents... and I don't know if I could bring myself to give them away...

Pixie said...

psst indigo- have you done your db challenge yet? I wanted to contact you but you don't seem to have an email boohoo! get in touch pix4bu at yahoo dot com

aforkfulofspaghetti said...

So I take it they're good, then, yes? ;)

Anonymous said...

These look to die for! I love brownie -like cookies and I'm going to try these soon as I can manage to convert the grams into ounces, that is ;)

Peabody said...

Well, at least you like the cookies. :)

Anonymous said...

OMG!! A chocolate brownie/cookie ? !! We totally believe you about these being godly good. You are the master! (bowing down to ya now).

Anna said...

Pixie - have emailed you =]

Aforkfulofspaghetti - You could say that...

Maddy (and anyone else who wants it) - I've translated to ounces for you; quantities are as follows:
4 oz each chocolate (or 8oz 'bittersweet' lol)
2 oz butter
3.5 oz flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3 oz light brown sugar sugar
10 oz chocolate chunks
Hope this helps!

Peabody - Yeah, I may forgive America as a continent for its confusing chocolate labelling on the grounds of its recipes... if I must =P

White on Rice Couple - Ooh, you'll make me blush! YOU are the masters, I think!

Abitofafoodie said...

Made these this weekend (and blogged about them) and they were indeed divine - though mine didn't work out quite as well as yours for some reason! You clearly are the master!!
Thank you so much for sharing these divine cookies.

LisAway said...

In Europe they sell a big block of chocolate called baking chocolate. It's just plain chocolate that's less expensive. In America, baking chocolate is UNsweetened chocolate (can substitute 3 tablespoons cocoa and one tablespoon oil for one ounce) and is ALWAYS melted to make the chocolate base of a recipe. Those posting comments saying it's nasty don't quite get it. You don't EAT it!!

LisAway said...

BTW, made these off Bake or Brake and they were astonishingly delicious.

Anonymous said...

made these over the weekend! they were a huge hit with my family.

Thanks for sharing!! :)

udit said...

wow, i really love chocolate...
ill try your recepie in my home... thanks for sharing..