VALENTINE’S DAY + A SWEET GIVEAWAY

Triple Threat Chocolate Cookies | for the love of the south

When I was a little girl, I let people know how much I loved them by stretching out my arms as wide as I could while saying, “I love you dissss much….” Giggles and cooing commenced, and I smiled, knowing my audience of family and friends were well pleased. Now that I’m grown, my affection is shown over a cup of coffee and conversation, a sweet handwritten letter, or, more commonly, a plate full of goodies.

There is something about Valentine’s Day that always makes me exultant. Rose and crimson blossoms strewn across the markets, lovely angelic cards being sent to loved ones, and the best part of this holiday is the divine excuse to eat piles and piles of chocolate. Whenever I began to think of what to prepare on this special day, I immediately started thinking of chocolate. Since it is a natural aphrodisiac, I figured a triple chocolate cookie would be the best dessert to make for Michael (also known as a triple threat)!

Barefoot and giddy as a schoolgirl, I threw on my crinkled, linen waist apron and began tearing through bags and bags of chocolate. Chopping the deeply rich morsels while watching thin tatters of chocolate wrinkle and pucker under the weight of my knife gave me a pleasure all its own. Ella Fitzgerald kept me company as she continued crooning about “These Simple Things” in the background.

Triple Threat Chocolate Cookies | for the love of the south

I melted the chocolate gently, stirring the gravel-sized matte shards until they slowly but surely gave way and became a gleaming pool of silken chocolate. Adding the melted chocolate to the batter magically transformed the mixture to an almost mousse-like consistency. I was already in heaven. Once the cookies bake and cool to a lacelike chocolate crisp, the only garnish these beauties need is a crowning glory of smooth and shiny glaze.

These triple threat cookies are a lovely display of affection, satisfying whoever is on the receiving end. I gave a plate full to Michael and watched him bite off the edge of the cookie. It shattered under his teeth and chocolate crumbs tumbled down into the depths of our taupe couch. He looked at me in sheer satisfaction. With impeccable timing and a humble heart, I asked him how much he loved me. He smirked, stuck a cookie in his mouth and with his arms stretched out as wide as he could, he said, “I love you this much!” Be still my heart…

Mohawk Valley Raw Honey Giveaway | for the love of the south

{Because y’all are the bee’s knees, I’m giving away an array of wonderful Raw Honey from Mohawk Valley Trading Co. All you have to do is leave a comment below, letting me know your favorite Valentine’s Day sweet treat! The contest ends at midnight on February 16th, and the winner will be chosen and contacted on February 17th!} Congrats to Emily who is the winner of the raw honey!

(A little about Raw Honey from Mohawk Valley Trading Co.: If you are planning to use honey for its health-benefits, it must be raw honey. Heating honey (pasteurization) destroys the all of the pollen, enzymes, propolis, vitamins, amino acids, antioxidants, and aromatics.)

Recipe: Triple Threat Chocolate Cookies

Inspired by Bon Appétit

Note: You can use your favorite chocolate in this recipe whether it is milk, dark or bittersweet chocolate. Also, you can make this dough ahead and keep it in the fridge. I would keep it stored in a container rather than try and make a log out of the dough (trust me, it’s too soft)!

20 oz. of bittersweet chocolate, chopped, divided

¼ cup of all-purpose flour

1 ½ teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon of kosher salt

1 ½ cups dark brown sugar, packed

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

4 eggs

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

2 tablespoons of sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Heat 8 ounces of chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir until the chocolate has completely melted. Let cool slightly. Keep the saucepan out for melting more chocolate for the glaze.

Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in a small bowl.

In a mixer fitted with a beater attachment, beat brown sugar and butter together on a medium-high speed until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Switch to a whisk attachment and add eggs, vanilla and sour cream and whisk just until combined. Gradually mix in melted chocolate, whisking for a few more minutes (the mixture will begin to resemble chocolate mousse at this point.) Stir in flour mixture, and fold in 8 ounces chopped chocolate. Cover and chill until firm, at least 30 minutes.

On a parchment-lined baking sheet, drop heaping tablespoons of dough about 2-inches apart. Bake cookies, rotating baking sheet halfway through, about 15-18 minutes. Let the cookies cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes (this will seem like an eternity but they are well worth the wait!) Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

Melt the remaining 4 ounces of chopped chocolate in reserved bowl and set over reserved saucepan of simmering water. Let chocolate cool slightly and drizzle glaze over cookies. Eat immediately if you cannot help yourself any longer (and do not mind chocolate smeared across your face), and for the more patient souls, allow to set for 15-20 minutes.