Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Bittersweet Chocolate Flats

I styled this photo over two years ago. Imagine my surprise when it showed up in today's Boston Globe! (photo shot by Wendy Maeda)

Bittersweet chocolate flats
December 2, 2009

Makes 2 1/2 to 3 dozen

Bliss is when a generous bar of bittersweet chocolate is chopped and mixed into a buttery dough with just enough flour, salt, and eggs to form a mixture that bakes into golden, crunchy flats. The secret ingredient, one that makes an ordinary cookie into a great one, is a small amount of apple cider vinegar. You won’t notice it. The vinegar accentuates gentle caramel overtones in the brown sugar. The dough is loaded with shards of bittersweet chocolate, which will leave messy, deep brown prints on your fingers. This is part of their freshly baked, ooze-with-chocolate charm.

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt, preferably fine sea salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
2 1/4 cups chopped bittersweet chocolate (between 60 and 65 percent cocoa)

1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt just to blend them.

3. In an electric mixer, cream the butter on medium-low speed for 3 minutes. Add the light brown sugar in 2 additions, beating well after each one. Add the granulated sugar in 2 additions, beating well after each one. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until just incorporated. Blend in the vanilla and vinegar.

3. With the mixer set on low speed, mix in the flour mixture in 2 additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand. Stir in the chocolate.

4. With a large spoon, make rounded 2 tablespoon mounds of batter and set them on the baking sheets, arranging them 3 inches apart (6 to 8 per sheet; the cookies spread).

5. Bake the cookies for 13 minutes or until set and golden. Let them stand on the sheets for 1 minute, then transfer to racks to cool. Store in an airtight tin. Lisa Yockelson

**For more holiday baking ideas, check out my cookie recipes in Carlie Irwin's post next week at

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