For my last bake of 2015 I decided on a deliciously indulgent cookie. Chocolate Fudge, with rum soaked raisins and hazelnuts. I found a few recipes on the internet and decided to use one from Joy Of Baking, though I made a few changes to suit my taste.
The basic idea of a chocolate cookie with a soft, fudge-like centre was very appealing. Using a 55% cocoa solid chocolate instead of my usual 70% turned out to be a good idea, making the end result rich, but not too rich. For the additions to the cookies I decided upon some milk chocolate chips and some raisins and hazelnuts. I remember from years ago that Cadbury did a rum and raisin chocolate bar, or at least I think it was Cadbury, They also do a hazelnut and chocolate bar. So both of those seemed ideal ingredients. I soaked my raisins in rum and then drained them so that they would absorb some and swell slightly, but not be overpowering with the flavour of rum.
Although the recipe takes a while and can get you a little bit messy it is well worth the effort, since the resultant cookies are a triumph, in my opinion. They take only about 10 minutes to bake, and outside cracks to reveal the soft inside. The crispy outside collapses as you bite into the cookie, and your mouth fills with the soft fudge interior with the juicy raisins and the nice crunch of hazelnuts.
I highly recommend anyone to try these, varying the fillings as you wish. I also made another batch, with milk chocolate chips, dried cranberries and chopped pecans. They, too, turned out very well. So be inventive and you will be pleasantly surprised.
- 450g dark chocolate, chopped(or chips) – I used 55% cocoa solid chips
- 350g sugar
- 4 medium eggs(large in USA)
- 60g plain flour
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 60g unsalted butter
- 1tbsp vanilla extract
- 150g milk chocolate chips
- 80g hazelnuts, chopped in half
- 120g raisins, soaked in some rum, or cold tea, and drained completely
- Melt the dark chocolate and butter in a bain marie(double boiler), stirring until a silky smooth consistency. Set aside to cook to room temperature.
- Mix the flour, salt and baking powder together and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer(can be done with a hand mixer) place the eggs and sugar and whisk together until you have a pale, thick mixture, which is of ribbon consistency when lifted with a spoon and allowed to drop back into the bowl.
- Add the vanilla extract and mix in.
- Fold in the flour mixture, being sure not to over mix, as you dont want to lose the air in the egg mixture.
- Add the milk chocolate chips, raising and hazelnuts and stir in gently.
- Cover with cling film and refrigerate for about an hour, so the mixture firms up.
- Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F.
- Spoon the mixture onto baking sheets, lined with parchment paper, about 3 tablespoons for each cookie.
- Form into a ball and flatten slightly. The cookies will spread, so leave enough space to allow for that.
- Bake in then oven for 10 – 14 minutes, until the tops just start to crack and the cookie is set.
- Remove from the oven and leave on the baking tray for 10 minutes to allow them to firm up as they start to cool.
- Carefully remove the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Eat one the same day, or store in an airtight container for a few days. These cookies can also be frozen.