Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

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These cookies combine three different forms of chocolate and have a deliciously soft texture.  The gluten-free version have great structural integrity and don’t spread out very much when baking.

 

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Wolfgang Puck

Yield: 30 cookies gluten free, 24 with regular flour

  • 1 3/4 cups gluten-free OR all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 oz (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into small pieces
  • 3/4-1 cup light brown sugar (depending on how sweet you want the cookies)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2-2 oz bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • 1 3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

 

  1. With an electric mixer on medium speed, soften butter.
  2. Add brown sugar and beat together on high speed until fluffy.  Stop machine to scrape down the sides as necessary.
  3. Decrease speed to medium and beat in eggs and vanilla.
  4. Stop machine, scrape in melted chocolate, and beat on medium speed until thoroughly combined.
  5. Beat in cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
  6. On low speed, gradually beat in flour.  (If using all-purpose flour, beat just until combined.  Luckily, over-beating is not a worry for gluten-free flour.)
  7. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts, if using.
  8. Position racks to divide oven into thirds and preheat to 350ºF.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  9. Shape dough into 2-tablespoon balls and space them 2 inches apart on baking sheets.
  10. Bake about 15 minutes, or until slightly firm to the touch, reversing the trays front to back and top to bottom halfway through.
  11. If making gluten-free cookies, leave them on the sheets for a few minutes after they come out of the oven so they harden a little more.
  12. Cool cookies on wire rack.

 

Black and White Cheesecake

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This recipe comes from Mary Engelbreit and was originally a chocolate-amaretto cheesecake.  To avoid anything almond related, for my friends with nut allergies, I turned it into a chocolate-vanilla cheesecake.  For a gluten-free crust, you’ll need to make your own chocolate wafer cookies, but luckily this is not difficult!  I’d recommend baking them in advance, though.

 

Black and White Cheesecake
Adapted from Mary Engelbreit

Yield: 9-inch cake

  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 4 1/2 oz chocolate wafers, crushed
  • 1 lb cream cheese, at room temperature
  • a little under 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 oz semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 2 tablespoons amaretto or other almond-flavored liqueur (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract (optional)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Wrap the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan in aluminum foil so that the foil comes halfway up the side.
  2. In a small bowl, combine butter and chocolate wafer crumbs.  Gently press mixture into the bottom of the pan.
  3. Bake crust for 10-15 minutes if gluten free, 10 minutes if not.
  4. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool.  Leave the oven on.
  5. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, on medium-high speed, beat cream cheese until light and fluffy.
  6. Scrape down side of bowl, add sugar, and beat until well blended.
  7. Scrape down side of bowl again and add eggs one at a time, beating until blended.
  8. Beat in vanilla and salt.
  9. Transfer half of the mixture to a medium bowl.
  10. If using amaretto and almond extract, add them to one bowl now.  Beat until combined.
  11. Beat semisweet chocolate into the other bowl, then pour into pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
  12. Slowly pour the white layer on top of the chocolate layer, smoothing the top with a clean spatula.
  13. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until almost set.  The center will still be jiggly when you shake the pan.
  14. Turn off the oven and prop the door open with a wooden spoon.  Let the cheesecake sit there for 1 hour.
  15. Remove cheesecake from oven and run knife around the pan edge to loosen it.
  16. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool completely.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight (although if you’re impatient, you can also eat it the same day).
  17. Cut cake with a large knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean between each slice.

Chocolate Wafer Cookies

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Chocolate wafer cookies are great to have around, not only for snacking on but also for, say, crushing and turning into cheesecake crusts.

Original recipe

 

Chocolate Wafer Cookies
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Yield: 50-60 1 3/4-inch wafers

  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free OR all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

 

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter and sugar.
  2. Beat in cocoa, salt, and baking soda.
  3. Beat in flour.
  4. Beat in milk and vanilla.
  5. Transfer the dough to a large bowl or a cutting board and knead a few times to make sure it is evenly blended.
  6. Form dough into a log about 14 inches long and 1 3/4 inches in diameter. Wrap log in wax paper or foil and refrigerate until firm, at least one hour, or until needed.
  7. Position the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  8. Cut log of dough into slices a scant 1/4-inch thick and place them 1-2 inches apart on baking sheets (even cookies made with all-purpose flour will spread).
  9. Bake for 12-15 minutes, rotating the baking sheets from top to bottom and back to front about halfway through.  The cookies will puff up and deflate; they are done about 1 1/2 minutes after they deflate.
  10. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets on racks, or slide the parchment onto racks to cool completely.  They should crisp as they cool.  If they don’t, return them to the oven to reheat and bake a little longer, then cool again.
  11. These cookies may be stored in an airtight container for up to two weeks or be frozen for up to two months.

Sour Cream Cookies

This is a tender cookie studded with raisins or cranberries (or even chocolate chips if you prefer).  They spread out more when gluten free, as expected, but not unreasonably so.

Original recipe

Sour Cream Cookies
Adapted from All Recipes

Yield: 24 cookies

  • 1/2 cup shortening OR butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar, depending on how sweet you want them
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 cups gluten-free OR all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins OR cranberries OR chocolate chips
  • 2 cups chopped pecans (optional)
  1. In a medium bowl, cream together shortening OR butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until smooth.
  2. Stir in sour cream.
  3. Mix in salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
  4. Mix in flour.
  5. Stir in raisins OR cranberries OR chocolate chips, and pecans if using.
  6. Cover dough and refrigerate for 1/2 hour.  (This step is less important if you’re using gluten-free flour, so I usually skip it.)
  7. Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Grease cookie sheet.
  8. Drop dough by teaspoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheet.  Space cookies 1-2 inches apart, using the larger distance if gluten free.
  9. Bake 15-20 minutes.