Festive Fortnight [10]: Chocolate Cookies with Mint Icing

Just looking at the pictures of these cookies makes me incredibly happy. They look so cute and festive! Plus, I know how they taste as well and let me tell ya; they are delicious. These cookies are a huge success all around.

This is the first time I made royal icing myself. Last year, when I made gingerbread cookies (which looked similar to these chocolate cookies) I bought ready made royal icing, because I couldn’t find a place to buy corn syrup. This time I had a little more time and did a little more research, and I found out you can just as easily use golden syrup, which I’ve got lying around in my cupboard anyway. The icing is super easy to make, and the mint really takes it up a notch.

The cookies themselves are wonderful, too. They’ve got a very rich chocolate-y taste and the texture is just right as well. And like the icing, they’re super easy to make! Just make sure you’ve got some time, because the dough will need to chill in the fridge for an hour. Apart from that, it’s a quick recipe with standard ingredients. Perfect for the Christmas holidays!


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Gingerbread Cookies

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! I had a lovely day with my family, eating lots and lots of food – including these gingerbread cookies, which turned out to be a huge success. Definitely one to remember for next year!

I hadn’t expected to make quite as many cookies as I did – I’m pretty sure there were about 120 of them! Of course, they were quite small and not very thick, so that may have something to do with it. If I had actual gingerbread man cookie cutters there might not have been this many. Not that I’m complaining! They turned out to be delicious, and I had a lot of fun making them, especially once I got the hang of piping the icing.

This week is technically a week off, at least from my internship, but I’ll probably spend most of it working on my very last university project/assignment/thingy. January will be the last month of my internship and then I’m done with university… Out into the ‘real’ world I go – terrifying yet exciting! I do think I’ll have much more time to blog again, which is something I’m really looking forward to.

But first things first; let’s get to the recipe for these yummy cookies!


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Decadent Three-Layer Brownies

These brownies are more commonly known as “slutty brownies” but I don’t like that name, so I went for “decadent three-layer brownies” instead. It’s still the same type of brownie, though: a layer of cookie dough covered by a layer of Oreos covered by a layer of brownie.

I know.

They’re as good as they sound. Interestingly, though, they taste far more delicious when they’re completely cooled down than when they’re still warm, which is counter-intuitive to me, but hey. You live, you learn.

Although there are quite a few steps, these brownies are definitely easy to make. I simply combined two of my other recipes and threw in some Oreos in between. They’re very dense and heavy, though, so I cut these into rather small pieces. But I’m not here to judge: you do you.


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Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies

A little over a week ago I got an email from my thesis supervisor saying I passed my dissertation, and with a very good grade as well! To celebrate this, I decided to bake some cookies (yes, that is celebrating for me), and guys – they might be the best cookies I have ever baked.

They’re based on the M&M cookies I did last year, but instead of M&M’s I used dark chocolate chips and pecans and they turned out delicious. I prepared the dough in the evening so that it cool chill over night, and then I baked the cookies the next morning. When they were done, me and one of my friends tried one pretty much straight away, having let them cool just enough so that we wouldn’t burn our mouths.

I couldn’t just eat one – I needed more of them straightaway. And that rarely happens with me and baked goodies. Needless to say, the cookies were gone within a day – but let’s make something clear here: I didn’t eat them all by myself (although that would’ve been fine too). I had some more friends over for dinner and they seemed to like them just as much as I did. This recipe is definitely a winner, and I suspect I will make these chocolate chip and pecan cookies quite a lot in the future!


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Crispy Cinnamon Biscuits

A few weeks ago, my favourite biscuits were on sale at the supermarket: cinnamon biscuits by a brand called Verkade (not sponsored, although I wish I was). They’re crunchy and sugary and cinnamony – they’re delicious. I don’t often buy cookies or biscuits at the supermarket, because I always figure they’ll be better if I make them myself, anyway. That’s just a fact – home made always tastes better than store bought.

However, these kaneelbiscuitjes (as they are called in Dutch) are among the few cookies I am actually more than happy to buy. I can munch on them all day. Which is exactly what I was doing (probably while watching Friends or New Girl) when I came up with the idea to try and make these cinnamon biscuits myself, to see if they would actually be even more delicious.

Cut to this weekend. I’d put together my recipe, put on some Dire Straits, and got to work on the dough. At one point I was afraid it wouldn’t come together, but I added a little bit of milk and kneaded the dough with my hands and it turned out beautifully. This was the second time I used the slice and bake method (rolling the dough into a log and then slicing it into cookies), and because I actually let the dough cool for plenty of time this time around, it worked perfectly!

These crispy cinnamon biscuits go really well with a nice cup of tea, or just as a snack whenever you feel like it. I’d definitely recommend giving them a try. Oh, and they’re definitely better than the supermarket biscuits.


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Chocolate Oreo M&M Cookie Bars

I’ve got a good one for you today, guys. I wasn’t planning on baking anything this weekend and then I had a huge craving for chocolate, and that could only mean one thing. Time to bake something extremely delicious with way too much sugar. Which is how I ended up with these Chocolate Oreo M&M Cookie Bars.

That’s right.

These bad boys pack a chocolate punch. I’ve thrown in Oreos, M&Ms and chocolate chips. As if those first two weren’t enough to get you on a sugar high. The more chocolate, the better, right? My initial plan was to bake Oreo and M&M cookies, but then I figured I had to let the dough cool in the fridge for at least an hour and that was way too much hassle for me on a lazy Saturday. Then I remembered these cookie bars by Averie Cooks, and all was saved.

I modified her recipe a little bit and threw in some extra chocolate, with these super easy, super yummy cookie bars as a result!


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Pistachio Cookies

Initially, my plan for today was to come up with a nice Christmas cookie recipe, as I did last year around this time, but I couldn’t come up with something nice and Christmassy that I actually felt like eating, too. I only knew I wanted to bake pistachio cookies, so in the end I just decided to ignore the obvious theme that’s been holding the blogosphere in its firm grip for the last month, and just bake pistachio cookies – plain and simple.

After buying the pistachios yesterday evening, I spent about an hour peeling them and trying to remove the skins  (which I just learnt is much easier if you boil the nuts for a while). My fingertips are still hurting, and I’m regretting not buying the peeled pistachios, even if they were more expensive. I listened to the audiobook of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets while peeling though, so I did have some fun!

These cookies turned out really nice! They are crunchy and yummy and the pistachio flavour comes through beautifully. It’s very easy to make them, and I used the slice and bake method, which means rolling the dough in a cylinder shape, chilling it in the fridge and then simply slicing it into cookies. I only let the dough cool for about 15 minutes (because I was impatient), so my cookies didn’t turn out very neat or round. However, if you want neat, uniformly shaped cookies, I recommend chilling the dough for at least 3 or 4 hours.

Either way, they taste really good, so I recommend giving them a try!


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Macarons: Take Two

Those of you who follow me on Twitter may have noticed that I attempted to make French macarons again this weekend. I did so once before, in June last year, but although I did get a couple of cookies out of it (and they had the little feet!) I wasn’t completely satisfied back then. They were too lumpy. So, I declared I would try to make them again soon. …And here we are, in September 2015, with my second attempt.

Well, my second and my third attempt, actually.


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Chocolate Brownie Cookies

I don’t have chocolate cravings all that often, but when I do, I usually make my chocolate brownies – my very first recipe on this blog and the only one I know completely by heart. However, I’d recently seen a YouTube video by CupcakeJemma in which she makes chocolate brownie cookies. This intrigued me! Brownies, in cookie form? Yes please!

I decided to transform my own brownie recipe into a brownie cookie recipe and it worked like a charm! I added a little bit of extra flour, some baking soda and used light brown sugar instead of granulated sugar and these beauties were the result. They taste delicious, are kind of fudge-y and very chocolate-y, which was just what I was looking for…


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Chewy M&M’s Cookies

About a week ago, I suddenly found myself feeling this inexplicable urge to bake some M&M cookies. M&M cookies always make me think of the time when I was about 8 or 9 and my Mum and I tried to make some, but it all went quite horribly wrong. My Mum had accidentally put the oven on grill and when she got back to it after the required time had gone by, the entire utility room (which is where our oven was back then) was blue with smoke and the cookies were burnt to a crisp. I don’t think I ever made M&M cookies after that…

So, in order to avoid a disastrous outcome this time, I did some cookie science research. It’s so interesting and fun! The smallest change in recipe can make such a big difference for the outcome of the cookie, and that’s just incredible to me. This is the first time I ever used baking soda (turns out you can just buy that in my regular supermarket – did not know that). I always just replaced baking soda with baking powder, but figured I should try the real deal now since baking soda and baking powder are definitely not the same thing. I also added a little bit of cornstarch to the mixture, because I found out that it helps to keep the cookie soft in the middle.

I used to not be a huge fan of making cookies (I’d much rather bake muffins or cakes) but I had tons of fun with this recipe. That’s probably got a lot to do with the fact that I now know what I’m doing (or at least, more so than I used to). It’s fun to try and put together the perfect recipe and mess around with all the ingredients. These cookies are by no means perfect, and I will by experimenting with this recipe a lot more, I expect, but they certainly taste delicious! They are chewy in the middle and crispy on the outside, and the M&M’s add both a lot of taste and a lot of colour to these adorable cookies.


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