Tuesday, February 01, 2005

The Charms of Dessert

The past couple of years I have tried to expand my cookie baking repertoire (and have been fortunate to have a number of willing young guinea pigs, er, people to share the results). Be they homely in appearance or utterly elegant, cookies will always have a place in my kitchen for their sheer ease and speed of creation... not to mention their perfect compact size and flavor.

Since this week's Dinner Club will feature Swiss cheese fondue, I thought a simple dessert would be in order. I found a recipe for chocolate shortbread cookies called "chocolate charms," which are aptly named as they do fall into that category of "darling wee cookies!"

I mixed up the dough shortly after getting home from work, kneading the dough together at the last to work the flour and cocoa into the butter more thoroughly, then wrapped it up and chilled it while I sat back for some afternoon reading and a comforting dinner.

Eventually I remembered to pull out the dough, lay parchment on the baking sheet, and heat up the oven. I rolled the dough into soft 1" balls and pressed them gently to keep them steady on the cookie sheet, then baked them.

The recipe calls for a dusting of cocoa powder once the cookies have cooled to give them a truffle-like appearance, and believe me, I will do that before serving them tomorrow night.

But fresh from the oven? No way. Just give me a couple of those precious little gems and let them melt in my mouth.

Sweet, sweet buttery chocolate goodness.

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