As it would turn out, this week has been a big one for us! We found out that Greg, the hubby, has been chosen to complete a twelve month head and neck surgery and reconstructive fellowship at the University of Indiana medical center in thriving Indianapolis. Once you become a physician, the journey is not over. Surgeons train for at least five years after becoming MD’s; I have so much respect for doctors! It’s great to know that Greg is almost done with a long, six-year road of post-med school training and can rest soon!
Did I mention today is my hubby and my ninth anniversary or marriage?! It’s a pretty fabulous day!
Meanwhile, we are expecting our third child. This pregnancy has been filled with challenges, while the previous two were almost a breeze. Still, this week brought good news via a 20-week anatomy ultrasound. The baby is completely healthy…. and a little boy! Snu Magoo is slightly disappointed that she won’t have a sister in the near future. “This baby is going to be very handsome, but I want a pretty baby!” was today’s comment. The other day, her main concern was The Girls being outnumbered by The Boys. Regardless, we are certain that she will love Little Guy #2 when she meets him. She is a wonderful big sister: caring, thoughtful and always willing to instruct and guide her brother.
New Mexico is a very hot place to be in the summer, especially if you have an ancient evaporative cooling system (no a/c in this state). Fear not: cold ice coffees; luscious, fresh chocolate chip cookies and one’s feet up can cure the toil of any 100•F day… well, almost. These dark chocolate chunk cookies taste almost like cookie dough, are laced with molasses-tinted brown sugar and are swimming in sweet vanilla.
The salty, crunchy walnuts provide perfect juxtaposition to the soft, moist cookie. The key is lots and lots of the highest quality bittersweet chocolate. If you think you’ve had enough, you probably should through in another handful for good luck.
Oh, and these are much lighter than a traditional chocolate chip cookie… depending on how much chocolate is added, of course!
Sometimes, we walk to the fro-yo shop, where my daughter gets a chocolate-drenched and fruit-covered ice-cream. The Little Guy prefers to go next door to pick-up a gargantuan chocolate chip and walnut cookie. He does not like to share his cookie, no matter how nicely he is asked. These cookies are inspired by our special trips to obtain afternoon, summer time treats!
Meanwhile, Snu Magoo is becoming a talented baker and blogger in her own right, as well as the best cookie-eater of any four-year-old I know. Provided the cookie is very, very chocolatey. She would be especially pleased with a cookie-ice cream sandwich! Our kids don’t eat a lot of sweet treats, so they enjoy them that much more on special occasions. I find the little ones take extra pleasure in devouring creations that they help make.
It is fairly well-know that the Little Guy’s favorite Sesame Street character is Cookie Monster (“Me Want Cookie”) and his first word was, of course, cookie. It goes without saying that he wholeheartedly approves this recipe! It’s nice to keep extras stashed in the freezer for an exceptional indulgence for him (or Mom).
Light Dark Chocolate-Walnut Cookies
Adapted from a recipe at Cooking Light
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup white wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup cow’s milk or goat’s milk butter, or Earth Balance buttery sticks, softened
2-3 teaspoon vanilla extract, to taste (I prefer lots of vanilla flavor)
2 large eggs, room temperature
2, 3.5 ounces European 70-73% dark chocolate bars, chopped, or more, to taste (about 1 1/4-1/2 cup total)
1 cup roasted, chopped walnuts, or more, to taste
- Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, baking soda and salt, stirring with a whisk.
- Combine sugars and butter in a standing mixer; beat with a mixer at medium-high speed until well-blended and fluffy.
- Add vanilla and eggs; beat for a minute or so more, until well incorporated.
- Slowly add flour mixture, chocolate and walnuts; beat on low just until blended. Scrape down the sides partway through mixing.
- If dough is not adequately brimming with nuts and chocolate, feel free to add more, to taste.
- Refrigerate dough until very firm, several hours (or freeze for an hour or so, until very firm).
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Drop dough with a two to three tablespoon melon ball scoop, 2 inches apart, onto the baking sheets.
- Place both sheets, side-by-side, in the center rack of oven. If both sheets do not fit, place on separate racks and rotate halfway through baking.
- Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until barely golden. Do not overbake; aim to underbake. The cookies will continue to cook while resting.
- Cool on pans for a few minutes.
- Remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks (or enjoy immediately, while warm).
©Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, shannaward.com (2013-2014), unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from this blog’s author, Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, and/or owner is strictly and completely prohibited.