Thursday, November 21, 2013

Vegan Mexican Chocolate Cookie

Vegan Mexican Chocolate Cookie
Vegan Mexican Chocolate Cookie

I was really in the mood for some spicy chocolate the other day so I made these for the art opening at Pile of Bricks, around the block from my house. This is a slight variant of a tester cookie I made for Little Baby's Ice Cream. We have never made them there yet. I was worried about them being too spicy for a general audience so I toned them down a bit. I used a guajillo and an ancho chile, both dried. The ancho is a mild. smoked poblano pepper and the guajillo is also mild. They add a lot of flavor without too much heat. I probably could have used 2 of each without the cookie being crazy hot. Instead, not realizing this until the batter was made, I  added 1 tsp cayenne to a bowl of sugar and rolled the cookies in that before baking. It worked perfectly. Now they were pretty, chocolatey, and spicy.

Vegan Mexican Chocolate Cookie

352g unbleached all purpose flour
6g baking soda
6g salt
40g cocoa powder

218g earth balance margarine
190g unbleached cane sugar
203g brown sugar
1 guajillo chile
1 ancho chile
1tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cardamom

21g flax seed
83g water
13g vanilla

1 bag of non dairy semisweet chocolate chips

200g unbleached cane sugar
1 tsp cayenne powder

In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa. (This recipe has tons of salt, chocolate cookies can handle more and spicy food can handle more. Keep it all balanced. Or use less if your concerned about saltiness but cookies are probably not the thing to make if you have any health concerns.) 

Grind the dry chiles in a clean coffee grinder, ideally an extra one that you don't use for coffee. Then cream the butta with chiles and spices. This helps the spices absorb into the fat, retaining the essential oils and becoming more evenly distributed throughout the cookie. Once the butta is softened up and full of flavors, cream the sugar into the butta in 2 additions. 

Next grind the flax seeds in the coffee grinder that you used for chiles. This will help clean out all the chile. Put the ground flax in a very small bowl and add the water. Whisk vigorously.until fully incorporated. Let sit for 1 -2 mins, depending on water temperature and vigor while whisking. The flax while get thicker and more gelatinous. This is how to make vegan eggs for baking recipes.

Add the fleggs to the large bowl with the butta/sugar mixture and stir well to combine. Add vanilla and stir again. Add the flour mixture to the everything else mixture in 2 batches. Stir just until combined, no floury spots but don't overmix. Cookies do not need to be kneaded, we arent trying to develop the gluten. Chewy cookies are created by caramelization of sugar, not through chewy glutinous dough like pretzels and bagels.

 Scoop cookies with a tiny ice cream scooper/ cookie scoop that is 1 Tablespoon. Roll several at a time in spicy sugar. Put 20 on a half sheet pan. Press down gently on each one with the palm of your hand. Bake 11 1/2 minutes at 350. Let cool 10 minutes on pans then remove to cool completely. This spacing and pan fullness and cooking time will produce perfect results. Less full pans will cook quicker, bigger cookies will cook slower. Do whatever you like but I urge you to try my way if at all possible, they will come out barely crisp on the edges, super chewy all through and a tiny bit doughy right in the center.

Vegan Mexican Chocolate Cookie

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