It was in the middle of the night that I came up with these cookies. Originally devised to use up some silver dragees I had in my decorator's supply cache, it snowballed into a dark chocolate confection laced with malted milk powder and studded with the tiny silver-sugar balls. Nice and chewy, with the tiniest bit of "puff" to the centre and a nice crackle between "stars", I used both Dutch-processed, super-dark cocoa and a touch of black paste food colouring to get that real "black" background. The malt powder is there but not the dominant flavour - I guess you can say it's like a hint of all the good things from childhood waiting in the shadows. Of course, the dragees add visual impact but also a delicious crunch - lighter than, say, nuts, but still noticeable.
I brought these with me to a business meeting this week and they were loved by the other members of the team. None of them pegged "malt" as a flavour but some did mention them tasting similar to "mom's"! I'm a little behind in my usual posting for this week's roundup for 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats, but as they say, better late than never!
Starry Night Cookies
Makes about 16
1/4 cup non-hydrogenated shortening
1/4 cup softened, salted butter
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp milk
1 tsp black paste food colouring (optional)
1/3 cup Dutch process cocoa powder
1 cup spelt or oat flour
2 tbsp malted milk powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch baking powder
1/4 cup silver dragees, plus extra for topping if desired
- Preheat the oven to 350F and line baking sheets with parchment.
- Cream the shortening, butter, brown sugar vanilla until light and fluffy.
- Mix together the milk and food colouring and add to the creamed mixture.
- Sift in the cocoa, then beat in the flour, malted milk powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt until well combined.
- Fold in the dragees.
- Bake (one sheet at a time) for 8-9 minutes. Cool on the sheets for 10 minutes, then move to a wire rack and cool completely.
Total Fat: 8.0 g
Cholesterol: 7.8 mg
Sodium: 46.9 mg
Total Carbs: 23.2 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.9 g
Protein: 1.8 g