It was an amazing birthday weekend, as usual. I seem to get lucky in that department. It helps to surround yourself with awesome people. The rest of it seems to work itself out. I started Saturday with brunch at Radar with Andrew, my parents, my sister, and her fiancé. You know I love Radar. It’s not a birthday without going there. I ordered the bubble and squeak. Again. Creature of habit. Roasted veggies in what’s basically a mashed potato pancake and topped with mushroom gravy. It makes me hungry just thinking about it. That night some friends and I took over the new wine bar and bottleshop in the neighborhood, Spoke & Vine. It was glorious. They are only three months old, and have a great selection of affordable wine and snacks. It’s always fun to get some of my favorite people in the same place.
Sunday was my actual birthday. It involved a trip to Pip’s Original Doughnuts for a thai tea, fennel, and cardamom latte with almond milk and three of their made to order doughnuts — raw honey and sea salt, nutella and sea salt, and cinnamon sugar. There are about as many housemade chai varietals than there are doughnuts. The doughnuts are like little bites of fresh elephant ear. So, so good. Dinner was Toro Bravo with Andrew. Finally. That place still has a notorious wait years later, and you can’t get reservations. We showed up five minutes before it opened to a small line formed already, but we were thankfully able to get into the first seating. It lives up to the hype. Easily one of my favorite meals in the city. I’m actually glad I waited to go until after I’d gone to Spain. I think I appreciate what they’re doing so much more. It was a gorge session. Fried anchovies with fennel and lemon; sautéed chanterelles with cream on griddled bread; housemade chorizo and manchego; oxtail croquettes; jamon wrapped chicken; paella; churros and chocolate; cheese ice cream with berry compote; two bottles of wine. Happy birthday indeed.
These cookies were intense as must double-chocolate anything is. It’s not technically two chocolates, but it is the same chocolate half melted into the dough and the other half chopped up and studded throughout. That said, you are using unsweetened chocolate. I splurged on some good stuff, and it was freakin’ intense. I didn’t chop up the chunks nearly small enough for my taste. You’d get a super bitter and intense pure chocolate hit out of nowhere. Maybe some people are into that, but I most definitely am not. They were pretty, though, and the dough was delicious. It was just those dang chunks. The salt and espresso powder are necessary. Don’t skip! They stay gooey even long after they cool, which is exactly what I want in a cookie when I actually want a cookie.
Inspiration: Desserts for Breakfast
- 10oz good quality unsweetened chocolate, chopped about the size of chocolate chops
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs, room temp
- 1 1/3 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder
- 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
- sea salt flakes for topping
Measure 6oz of the chopped chocolate and melt it in a double boiler or other favorite melting method with the coconut oil. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, bakng powder, and salt. In the bowl of a mixer, beat the eggs, sugar, espresso powder, and vanilla extract for at least five minutes. The batter will be pale, light, and fluffy. Fold in the flour mixture and then the melted chocolate. Lastly add the chocolate chunks. Cover and chill in the freezer for about 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350° when you’re ready to bake. Line a cookie sheet or two and drop even tablespoons of batter on them. Space them out a fair amount as mine spread quite a bit. If they stick together, that’s just one cookie. Sprinkle the dough with the sea salt flakes.
Bake for 8-10 minutes. They will still be pretty gooey, but they’ll solidify as they cool. They’ll maintain their soft texture this way.