Let’s talk ginger.
Not the hair (although that would be fun too because I happened to have given birth to ginger baby). The vegetable. Or as most refer to it, the herb or spice.
Are you a fan?
After seeing this recipe you will be, in one form or another. Of this I am confident.
Know why I am so confident? Because it is a subtle infusion.
It’s a hint of ginger. An essence if you will.
I started out with a beautiful ginger infused caramel.
But before I get into that you probably want to know why I am making ginger infused caramels. Well, a little while back I was asked to participate in a challenge for Caribou Coffee.
Challenge: create a new holiday recipe inspired by Caribou Coffee’s Gingersnap Cookie Mocha using ground or fresh ginger.
Once I saw the challenge was from Caribou Coffee I jumped at the chance to participate. My husband is a huge fan of the coffee as well as the fabulous local coffee houses and spends a good deal of time there most weekday mornings.
But then I got totally thrown off by the whole “ginger”thing. Shy of making their exact coffee blend into a cookie, how was I going to create a sweet and delicious treat inspired by ginger?
1. Make it into caramels.
2. The end.
I had my heart set on a cookie.
My vision was a decadent cookie resting precariously on the side of a steaming coffee mug in front of a roaring fire. Feet up, cozy slippers on, Christmas music in the background and children happily reading books next to me.
As with all visions, it should start with baby steps. So first, the caramels.
Next, the decadent cookie.
I knew I wanted to stuff that amazing carmel into a cookie dough, but finding the perfect dough was a challenge. Most chocolate cookies that I tried were cocoa based and couldn’t hold their own when paired with the caramel.
But, I finally was able to find a recipe that worked. This recipe uses only actual chocolate to flavor the cookie which is exactly the pure and intense zing I was going for!
Let’s talk ginger.
- 12 ounces mini bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter cut into chunks
- 3 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Ginger Caramels cut into 1 inch squares
- 1 teaspoon crystallized ginger
Place chocolate and butter into a heat safe bowl and set bowl over a saucepan filled with 1 inch of simmering water.
Stir chocolate until fully melted then remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
Whisk in eggs and sugar until fully incorporated.
Now add in flour, baking powder and salt. Stir until dough comes together and then chill for about 2 hours.
When ready to prepare cookies, remove dough from fridge and using a small cookie scoop, prepare 12 scoops of dough. (Each cookie will use 2 cookie dough balls.)
Be sure your cookie sheet is lined in parchment.
Press the dough ball flat to about 1/2 inch thickness and place a ginger caramel inside. Press another flattened dough ball on top and press sides together, making sure there is a tight seal.
Do this six times and place on parchment lined cookie sheet.
Bake six cookies for 8 minutes at 350. (you will be baking for one more minute after adding ginger. If not adding crystallized ginger, bake cookies for 9 minutes.) Repeat until dough is gone.
If adding crystallized ginger pieces, add 5-7 pieces evenly dispersed over cookie. Cookie will spread out considerably, so place ginger pieces all the way to the edge of the cookie.
Put back in oven for 1 minute.
Allow cookies to cool slightly before eating.
Recipe adapted from myrecipes.com.
So the cookie isn’t resting on the mug, but I think next to it will do.
Tips & Tricks
I recommend making the caramels at least one day before making the cookies. They worked best cooled to room temperature and cut into squares.
If you are using crystallized ginger make sure you chop it into VERY very small pieces. (After a great deal of feedback I think my pieces on the cookies above were much too big and too close together.) It is extremely potent stuff and will overpower the chocolate & caramels. When placing the pieces onto the hot cookie, try sprinkling it like it is sanding sugar. Make sure the pieces are spread out over the cookie as much as possible.
The dough can be made 1-2 days in advance and kept in the fridge. Cookies will last about 1 week in an airtight container.
HINT: Put the cookies in an airtight container that is slightly bigger than you would need. Set cookies in, then place a piece of bread in the container. The bread will turn hard and the cookies will stay soft!
We have decadent cookies. We have a hot cup of fabulous Caribou Coffee.
I guess the only thing left is the roaring fire, and I think that is up to you. The rest of it… well. I will just be happy with the cookies. 🙂