vrijdag 22 juni 2007

Macadamia white chocolate chunk cookies

Even if this cookie does not come from the book I'm following, I wanted to share this one because it was the first american cookie recipe I made, and the one that has since haunted me ;o). My husband and I were vacationing in Florida for the very first time, when we bought a bag of Pepperidge farm cookies. We picked the macadamia nut version, because we truly had never heard from the nut before and wanted to try it. We bought bag after bag after eating that first cookie, and when we got home, I wanted to make them at home so we could keep on enjoying them.

A friend came to the rescue and found a copycat recipe on the internet. It was only months after that, that I finally tracked the nuts down in a supermarket in Germany (luckily, they are readily available all over Germany, just not here in the Netherlands). I went back to the recipe, tried to convert the cup measures into the metric system, and started baking.

The cookies did not taste like the ones we bought, but they were great. The people we shared them with have all been crazy about them. My BIL, who is definately the biggest fan, calls them 'killers' and that's what we all call them now. Since then, I've baked them for gatherings, as thank you's, as hostess gifts, as pick me ups for friends, you name it, I used it as a reason to share them. When I took pastry classes, I shared them with my class mates, and one of them introduced them in the restaurant he worked in where they serve them with coffee after dessert.

Years later, I discovered that in calculating grams for cups, I miscalculated the amount of nuts and chocolate. The original recipe had a ginormous yield and I halved it. I forgot to halve these two ingredients and I think that is what makes them extraordinary.

The recipe is very forgiving, you'll just have a little trouble making sure you get some dough with the nuts/chocolate :o). These freeze beautifully, and even the dough freezes well. Just portion them (I use a cookie scoop) before you do. I try to refrigerate dough balls for at least an hour or two before I bake them.

Pepperidge farm Sausalito cookies (copycat recipe with alterations)
1 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp salt (I omit as I use salted nuts)
2 1/2 cups of flour
12 oz chopped white chocolate (I prefer big chunks)
3 cups chopped macadamia nuts (I only chop roughly).

Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease cookie sheets (I use parchment or silicone mats).

Cream together sugars, butter, egg and vanilla (I use stand mixer with paddle attachment).
In another bowl sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt (I never do this, I just dump everything in with the creamed butter mixture). Mix until just blended. Add chocolate and nuts and briefly mix or stir with a wooden spoon. Form into 1 inch balls and place on cookie sheets 2 inches apart. Bake for 10 minutes (I actually bake them 12-14 minutes as we are of the crunchy cookie lovers' camp!).

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