Yesterday, a friend of mine called me up here in Oregon and told me she was desperately craving chocolate. Not one to miss an opportunity, I figured I’d help satisfy her need for cocoa and my need for a new recipe to try in one fell swoop. As always, I cracked open my King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion and came upon just the thing – fudge drops.
If you’ve never had a fudge drop before, let me tell you – it’s basically a fudge brownie masquerading as a cookie. Sounds pretty great, right? Even better, they’re easy to make!
Here’s the recipe taken from my Baker’s Companion:
- 12 ounces (about 2 cups) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) butter
- 3/4 cup (5 and 1/4 ounces) sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons espresso powder (optional)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup (3 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a double boiler or in the microwave, gently melt together the chocolate and butter. To avoid heating the chocolate too much and possibly burning it, the best method is to heat until the butter has melted and the chocolate has partially melted, then remove from the heat. Stir until all the chocolate melts.
In a separate bowl, beat together the sugar and eggs until they’re thoroughly combined. Add the espresso powder, vanilla, baking powder, and salt, then stir this mixture into the melted chocolate, mixing well until blended. Stir in the flour. Let the batter sit for 5 minutes to thicken; it should be the consistency of thick cake batter.
Drop the cookie dough in round blobs onto a parchment-lined or greased baking sheet. They should be a bit smaller than a Ping-Pong ball. Using a cookie scoop (or a small ice cream scoop that holds about 2 level tablespoons of liquid) makes this task extremely simple. Leave about 2 inches between the dough balls, as they’ll spread as they bake. Place a nonpareil or chocolate kiss in the middle of each, if desired.
Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes until their tops are shiny and cracked. You want these baked all the way through, but just barely; additional baking will make them cakey rather than fudgy. To make sure they’re baked, take the pan out of the oven and use a spoon or fork to gently cut into a cookie; it shouldn’t have any raw-appearing or liquidlike batter remaining in the center, but should still be moist.
Remove the cookies from the oven, wait 5 minutes, and transfer them to a wire rack to cool.
Alright – now here’s how I did it. First things first, I set my oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
I then melted the butter in a metal saucepan on medium-low heat.
Once the butter melted, I took the pan off the burner, placed it on a cool burner, and dumped in all the chocolate chips. The saucepan was still warm enough to melt the chocolate without burning any of it – you just have to keep stirring until all the chips have melted and you get the following result:
As a side note, if you think regular chocolate chips are good on their own, try them with melted and mixed with butter…
So, now that we had melted the chocolate, the next step was to beat the eggs and sugar together in a separate container. As always, I turned to my trusty Kitchen-Aid for the job.
I mixed them on medium-low speed until they were combined:
I decided not to use espresso powder because my friend isn’t a big caffeine fan, but if you want to, you’ll then add it along with the vanilla, baking powder, and salt into the egg and sugar mixture. I mixed those ingredients for a few moments, then added the melted chocolate/butter combination in, using a spatula to get pretty much all the chocolaty goodness out of the saucepan.
Next, I mixed it all up until it was completely blended together. I then added in the flour.
I then stirred the added flour to get the batter. Next, I let the batter sit and thicken up for the five minutes prescribed by the recipe.
After the five minutes (which may have included a spoonful sneaked for my own enjoyment – I know, raw eggs = bad, but you only live once…), I lined a baking pan with parchment paper. I then took a teaspoon, scooped out a size slightly smaller than a Ping-Pong ball like the recipe said, used my hands to roll it slightly into a ball shape (this part is definitely the dirty part, so be prepared for hands that look like you’ve been playing in the mud) and placed them onto the parchment.
These cookies do spread a good bit, so definitely try and keep them 2 inches apart on the pan.
The recipe said to bake them for 10-12 minutes. I found that just over 11 minutes worked for my oven. Once they came out of the oven, I let them sit for 5 minutes, then moved them to my baking rack to finish cooling off.
Here’s how they looked after they were all cooled off and ready to be enjoyed:
When my friend came over to try them, she said they were just what the doctor had ordered.
If you think these look good, give them a shot, you won’t be disappointed! Happy baking, everyone!