These are the cookies that almost never were…
Flicking through the pages of one of my favourite cookbooks, I almost paid off this recipe completely, by the mere title of it. You see, for Australians and New Zealanders, Chocolate Crackles are one of the mainstays of children’s Birthday parties. Rice Bubbles (the equivalent of Rice Crispies elsewhere) are congealed together using Copha (hydrogenated coconut oil), cocoa, desiccated coconut and icing sugar. No baking required – just show a little patience and that copha will re-solidify! I’m very well aware that many children (and adults) were delighted to find Chocolate Crackles adorning the party table… just NOT me! I was always more of a Honey Joy kind of girl…
So, it’s a fortunate thing that I took the pains to scan the list of ingredients for these cookies, confirming whether or not Rice Bubbles (or Copha for that matter!) were involved. I’ve been searching recently for ‘The Perfect Chocolate Cookie’ and this one comes incredibly close. It has the addition of nuts, which unfortunately made it a disappointment for my youngest child, however the rest of the family found them delicious! They come from Alice Waters’ cookbook ‘The Art of Simple Food’ – a fabulous book for both beginners and seasoned cooks alike.
Chocolate Crackle Cookies | Gather and Graze
- 150g/½ Cup (Toasted) Almonds – (I used Macadamia Nuts)
- 2 Tablespoons Caster Sugar
- 75g/½ Cup Flour
- ½ Teaspoon Baking Powder
- 250g/1¼ Cups Dark Chocolate
- 45g/3 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
- 1½ Tablespoons Brandy
- 2 Free-Range Eggs
- 55g/¼ Cup Caster Sugar
- Plus some extra Granulated and Icing (Powdered) Sugar
Chop together very finely the nuts and the 2 tablespoons of sugar (a food processor is handy if you have one for this step). Place them into a small bowl and sift over the flour and baking powder. Mix to combine.
Either in a heat-proof bowl over simmering water, or very carefully in the microwave, melt the chocolate and butter. Stir in the brandy and then remove from the heat.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and the 55g of sugar, until the mixture forms a ribbon (this should take about 5-7 minutes). Stir in the melted chocolate and nut/flour mixture.
Chill the dough in the fridge for 1 – 2 hours or until it has become firm.
Pre-heat the oven to 170°C and line a couple of baking trays with baking paper.
Using 2 small bowls, fill one with granulated sugar and the other with sifted icing (powdered) sugar. Roll the cookie dough into small balls (about a heaped teaspoon) and then roll them, a few at a time, firstly into the granulated sugar and then into the icing sugar to coat them.
Place them on the lined baking trays, a few centimetres apart to allow for spreading. Bake for approximately 10 -12 minutes, until they have cracks in their white shells. They should be firm on the edges, but still a little soft in the middle. Do not overbake.
- I used up half of the quantity of dough today (which made about 2 dozen) and have frozen the other half to use another day. Fingers crossed they will be just as lovely!
- These may take a little longer to make than the average cookie (especially with the 1-2 hour wait for the dough to chill), but they are well and truly worth the extra effort!
* Recipe from Alice Waters’ ‘The Art of Simple Food’ cookbook