Chocolate Mistake Cookies

The latkes were not the only disaster for the Hannukah party.  For the inevitable potluck, I planned to make a plate of cookies, including the famous lemon bars and an old recipe I found among my clippings called “Chocolate Crinkles”.  Something, however, went terribly wrong.  I should have realized something was amiss when the recipe said to stir the chocolate into the dry ingredients with a wooden spoon. Mine was way too stiff for that, and I needed to put it into my heavy-duty mixer.  I should have realized there was a problem when the recipe said to put the dough into the refrigerator to chill for a couple of hours until it was stiff enough to roll into balls.  Mine was already more than stiff enough. But I dutifully put it into the refrigerator to chill while I made the lemon bars.  Then I took out the rock-hard dough, and realized that the recipe said to put the remaining cup of confectioners’ sugar into a bowl to coat the dough balls.  What remaining confectioners’ sugar?  I had mixed the entire 2 1/2 cups specified into the batter. You see, the recipe didn’t say 2 1/2 cups, divided, just 2 1/2 cups, and I was in my usual hurry and read the subsequent instructions quickly.

But what was I to do. The potluck was in only a few hours, and I had run completely out of flour, eggs, and other baking ingredients.  So I rolled the very stiff batter into balls, coated them with confectioners’ sugar, put them on the baking sheet  – and baked.  The worst that could happen, I reasoned, would be that I would only have lemon bars to take with me.  Unbelievably, they chocolate cookies came out great.  They were slightly crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.  They were very chocolaty.  Everyone loved them.  So I decided to provide the recipe as I made them.

Chocolate Mistake Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, divided
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
2 1/2 Tablespoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 1/2 Tablespoons canola oil
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
4 large egg whites

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray one or two baking sheets with cooking spray.

In the large bowl of a mixer, sift together flour, 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a medium-size heavy saucepan, combine chocolate and oil and warm over very low heat, stirring frequently, until just smooth. Be careful that chocolate does not burn.  Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup, and vanilla until well-blended. Using a whisk, beat egg whites into the mixture until no lumps of brown sugar remain.  Gently stir the chocolate mixture into the dry ingredients, beating on low until no lumps remain.  Dough will be very stiff.

Put the remaining 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar into a shallow bowl. Dusting your hands with additional confectioner’s sugar, roll portions of the dough into one inch balls. Dredge each ball in confectioners’ sugar until heavily coated. Arrange balls on baking sheets 1 inch apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the tops are almost firm when tapped. Let stand about 2 minutes until the cookies firm up slightly. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and cool completely.  Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days’ freeze for longer storage.  Makes about 5 dozen cookies with 2 grams of fat/cookie.

Here they are nestled on a plate of lemon bars.  They don’t even look like mistakes.


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I have lost 200 pounds. I did not do it through surgery – I don’t like knives and needles – or by joining a club, vigorous exercise, or rigorous dieting. I did it by gourmet cooking. To be precise, by cooking low fat, really delicious food. I love to cook as much as I love to eat. Food magazines are some of my favorite reading. I would feel deprived if I couldn’t have the sensuous experience of good food crossing my lips. This blog is about my perpetual feast, my passionate love of food, with recipes, photos, and occasional advice and principles that I have learned along the way.

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