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Zesty Chocolate Cookies

Cookies are one of my favourite things to bake. I think part of that is nostalgia; I’ve always loved a good chocolate chip cookie, and I think they may have been the first thing I learned to bake on my own.

Nowadays, I’m always looking for new cookie recipes to try. A lot of times I’ll leave them as they are–for the first attempt, at least. But once I’m familiar with how the original recipe works and tastes, I like to start playing around and come up with something that’s a little more me.

Melted butter and chocolate

That’s what happened with these Zesty Chocolate Cookies. For these, I started off with the Baker’s Best White Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe. I can’t find a copy of it online, but the recipe is on page 50 of Baker’s Best Chocolate Cookbook (Brimar Publishing, 1995).

Egg mixture

The biggest difference between the original recipe and my version is the addition of orange zest. Honestly, I’m not entirely sure what compelled me to add it in–I’ve never been a big fan of chocolate and orange paired together. But it called out to me, and I just had to try it.

From my playing around, I found that including the zest of half to all of a medium orange is the best way to go. That leaves you with some room, depending on how subtle or strong you want the orange to be.

Orange zest and dry ingredients

When all is said and done, this recipe will leave you with about three dozen medium-sized cookies. They come out with some crispiness on the outside, but still soft and chewy on the inside.

And an extra bonus? The recipe only requires two bowls, making for some fairly easy clean-up.

Zesty Chocolate Cookie dough

Zesty Chocolate Cookies

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces Baker’s semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup whole wheat all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Zest from 1/2 to 1 full medium orange
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds

Directions

Using the microwave, melt the butter and chocolate together in a small bowl. Or, if preferred, melt in a double-boiler on the stove.

In a large bowl, beat the egg, sugars, and vanilla until well combined. Beat in the chocolate and butter mixture. Mix in the flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, orange zest, and sour cream until well combined; the dough may seem a bit dry at this point. Fold in the chocolate chips and almonds.

Chill the dough in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 350 F.

Line your cookie sheet(s) with parchment paper. Using a teaspoon, drop spoonfuls of cookie dough onto the paper, approximately two inches apart. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes.

Let the cookies sit for about five minutes before moving them to cool on a wire rack.