This is a re-run from Christmas 2010, but well worth repeating for those of you who missed it last year! These cookies are decadent and beautiful! If you love dark chocolate and peppermint, these are the cookies for you! Make them for a special treat for someone you love. You'll have a friend for life.
Double Chocolate-Peppermint Crunch Cookies
2 packages (Ghiradelli) 60% cocoa bittersweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup (Ghiradelli) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon instant Expresso powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy (16 round peppermint candies or leftover candy canes)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 large baking pans with parchment paper.
Place 2 cups chocolate chips in medium size metal bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir until smooth and melted. Cool. Place 2/3 cup melted chocolate in a small bowl. Set aside to drizzle on top of baked and cooled cookies.
Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, instant expressso and salt in a large bowl; whisk to combine. Place butter and sugar in large bowl of electric mixer, creaming until light and fluffy. Add extracts and beat until well combined. Add eggs; beat to blend. Stir in remaining melted chocolate. Add dry ingredients, mix until well combined. Stir in 1/2 cup chocolate chips.
Measure 1 level tablespoon dough; roll into a ball. Place on parchment paper lined baking sheet, spacing 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake for 8 to 9 minutes or until tops are cracked all over.
Remove from oven and cool on pan for 5 minutes. Place parchment paper and cookies on wire rack to cool completely.
Rewarm reserved 2/3 cup melted chocolate. Drizzle over cooled cookies using a fork. Immediately sprinkle with chopped peppermint. Chill just until chocolate sets, about 20 minutes. Yield: about 4 dozen.
Helen's Tips: I only had 1 bag of chocolate chips, so I measured out 1/2 cup to add to the batter at the end, melted what was left in the bag, and stirred it into the batter. When the cookies were cooled, I melted another 1/2 cup white chocolate chips and drizzled that over the cookies. They were still perfect!!
If you don't have instant expresso, leave it out! You could add 2 tablespoons STRONG brewed coffee in its place. Coffee intensifies the taste of chocolate..like this needs intensity!!
The better the cocoa, the better the cookies will be. I splurged for some REAL Dutch process cocoa from the Williams Sonoma Outlet. It was worth it! However, Ghiradelli will be almost as good. Same with the chocolate chips.. use the best you can get!
Shape these into small balls. Believe me, these are RICH cookies. And you'll make more servings.