“Love is not what makes the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile”
Would it be too cliche to tell you that I don’t like Valentine’s day ? Well, its true. I enjoy the fact that there is one more reason to celebrate ( and I feel life should have far more celebrations!) . And I am a romantic at heart (aren’t we all!) .What I don’t buy into is all the overrated hype and hoopla of it . And all the red .. there ‘s red balloons and banners and roses and cards and candy . And the hearts.. I have never liked the heart shape , I mean I never drew little hearts instead of dots when I wrote as a teen , I never had a heart shaped anything in life , and I don’t even own a heart shaped baking pan. Just a pet peeve of mine.
But one of my resolutions this year is to let go of my peeves (I have got quite a few , I’ ll tell you that!) and grow a bit.And I’m starting with Valentine’s day. Another reason ( and to be frank a MUCH more valid one ) is that since I started the blog five months back, the most requests I have gotten is for V Day bakes and romantic desserts. So there will be a lot of reds, and pinks and hearts (yes !) on these pages the next couple of weeks.
And the perfect way to start would be the Creative Cookie Challenge where we were asked to make cookies for “Hearts/Love” . I chose to make these super simple dark chocolate sugar cookies . As I typed this , I just realised that I have chosen chocolate in some form or another for almost all my cookies in the group ! Anyways … I think chocolate is always romantic and of course I used a heart shaped cookie cutter. I also tried to decorate them a couple of ways . Thats one more thing I never do ..decorate my cookies, I like them fuss free and rustic. But I figured what better reason to pull out the stops other than for love ! Ok, that was corny. Sorry.
So , I ll stop talking now . I made these awesome dark chocolate sugar cookies that I adapted from Sprinklebakes. They are perfect cut-out cookies , taste crisp and chocolatey. I also made my own coloured sugar and decorated the cookies in as valentine-sy a way as I could . Not too happy with my effort though. Could definitely be neater and better. But I didn’t mind as the cookies are so delicious !
You’ ll need:
- 225 grams or 1 cup unsalted butter , at room temperature
- 200 grams or 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg , at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 250 grams or 2 cups all purpose flour
- 90 grams or 1 cup dark cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp salt (omit if using salted butter)
For decorating (optional):
- 200 grams or 1 cup granulated sugar
- gel food colouring of your choice
- 100 grams dark chocolate
- 100 grams white chocolate
Makes : 2 dozen cookies (of around 4 cms)
Time : 15 mins prep + 1 1/2 hours chilling time + 15-20 mins baking time per batch
Lets get started:
Whisk together the flour, cocoa and salt in a bowl. Keep aside.
In another bowl ,beat together your room temperature butter and sugar until just combined. You can use a hand / stand mixer , I used a wooden spoon.
Add and mix in the egg and vanilla until incorporated well.
Add in the flour mixture and mix until a smooth dough is formed. Scrape the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl as required.
Wrap the dough in cling wrap and refrigerate for atleast an hour.
In batches (half / fourths) , roll out parts of dough until 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch thick . I roll out my cookie dough between two sheets of parchment. Using a cookie cutter , cut shapes and transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet.
Chill for atleast half an hour so that they retain their shape while baking. Meanwhile preheat your oven to 180 C/ 350 F.
Bake for 15- 20 mins . Cool completely and store away or decorate as you please.
Make your own coloured sugar :
Take the amount of granulated sugar in a clear ziplock bag and add a drop or two of gel colouring.
Rub it in until the colour is evenly distributed throughout . This takes a few minutes. You can also take the sugar and colour in a clear glass jar , close the lid and shake vigorously. If you find the colour too light , add another drop. If its too dark , add more sugar.
Decorating technique one : Place the cookies on parchment. Melt the white chocolate and using a fork , flick the chocolate onto the cookies . If the chocolate is thin , it ll fall in streaks . If its thicker like mine , it’ ll form s splotches. Sprinkle some sugar on top. Once dry , shake off excess sugar.
Decorating technique two : Melt the dark chocolate . Dip the cookies in the chocolate , shake off excess and dip in the coloured sugar. You can dip the front , or the whole cookie. I just did about a third of each cookie. Let cool on parchment
Decorating technique three: Use round cutters to make the cookies . Place a heart shaped cookie cutter in the centre and sprinkle the coloured sugar inside. Carefully lift the cutter off and remove any stray sugar. Chill and bake as above.
- Store in a closed airtight container at room temperature for upto a week.
- The dough can be chilled for upto 3 days and frozen for couple of months.
- Coloured sugar can be stored in the ziplock bag or closed container for months
- You can use sprinkles instead of the sugar.
These cookies are deliciously crisp and keep their shape like a dream . The chocolate flavour is deep and dark , so the cookie carries the extra sweetness of the decorations well. I ‘ll be honest . I loved them plain just as good as I liked the jazzed up ones. But thats just me :-). Make them any shape you want and decorate as you please. But they are perfect to spread some love with these tiny hearts this Valentines . Or any other day 🙂
The Creative Cookie Exchange
It is late January guys and you know what that means! Soon love will be in the air! Too corny? OK fine, but we all know Valentine’s Day is about to start trending, and we have the perfect cookies! Hearts, love, anything symbolizing hearts and love, we have it all! Check out our hearts and love cookies below and maybe make them for your loved ones!
You can also use us as a great resource for cookie recipes. Be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of them here at The Spiced Life). You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made:
- Aloha Linzer Cookies by All That’s Left Are The Crumbs
- Cheese Hearts by Bakingyummies
- Chocolate Valentine Sugar Cookies by Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Dark Chocolate Sugar Cookies by Flours and Frostings
- Double Chocolate Spritz Heart Cookies by The Spiced Life
- Happy Heart Lemon Cookies by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Meringue Hearts by Noshing With The Nolands
- Nutella Raspberry Cookies by Upstate Ramblings
- Pomegranate, Rose and White Chocolate Cookies by A Shaggy Dough Story
- Sour Cream Pecan Sandies by Magnolia Days
- Sweet Heart Cookies by 2 Cookin’ Mamas
- Yin Yang Cookies by Food Lust People Love