Jun 27, 2011

eat your heart out: chocolate cookies 'n' cream towers!

Chocolate Cookies 'n' Cream Towers

We really should post recipes other than cookies and cakes, but we do eat a lot of both so when I'm perusing recipe books the baked goods section always catches my eye first. 

I got this recipe from the FOOD&WINE Annual Cookbook 2007. It's a fun dessert option and even better is that you can make the cookies and eat them separately because they're great alone! You can also make the chocolate cream and or whipped cream and make oreo-type cookies.

Click below for the recipe!

(serves 6)
Must be made at least 6 hours before serving

Chocolate Cookies
    1.    1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
    2.    3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
    3.    1 large egg
    4.    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    5.    3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
    6.    1/4 teaspoon salt
    7.    1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

Chocolate Pastry Cream
    1.    1 cup half-and-half
    2.    3 large egg yolks
    3.    1/4 cup granulated sugar
    4.    1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    5.    1/8 teaspoon salt
    6.    3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
    7.    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Whipped Cream
    1.    1 cup heavy cream
    2.    1 teaspoon confectioners' sugar
    3.    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Making the Chocolate Cookies:
 In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and confectioners' sugar at low speed until smooth. Beat in the egg and vanilla, then beat in the cocoa powder and salt. Add the flour and beat just until combined. Form the cookie dough into 2 disks, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for about 1 hour, or until firm. (About a half an hour into the 1 hour wait is when I started making theChocolate Pastry Cream)
(Before rolling, test out the dough, after an hour mine was still s bit sticky and unroll-able and I stuck it back in the the fridge for a bit longer) 
Preheat the oven to 325°. On a lightly floured board, roll out each disk of chilled cookie dough to a 10 1/2-inch round, a scant 1/4-inch thick. Using a 2 1/2-inch round biscuit cutter, stamp out as many rounds as you can; transfer the rounds to a large rimmed baking sheet. Gather the dough scraps, chill briefly and reroll. (You should have 32 to 34 rounds.) Bake the chocolate cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, until they are just set. Let cool for 10 minutes, then transfer the chocolate cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Making the Chocolate Pastry Cream
 Set a fine sieve over a medium bowl. In a medium saucepan, bring the half-and-half to a simmer and keep warm. In another medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, flour and salt until the mixture is pale, about 1 minute. Whisk half of the warm half-and-half into the egg yolks, then pour the mixture into the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 6 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the melted bittersweet chocolate and vanilla. Strain the pastry cream through the sieve and press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the cream. Refrigerate the chocolate pastry cream for about 1 hour, or until chilled.

Making the Whipping Cream
  In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream with confectioners' sugar and the vanilla until firm.
Transfer 3/4 cup of the whipped cream to a small bowl. Beat in 3 tablespoons of the chocolate pastry cream until a light-chocolate cream forms.
 Assembling the Towers:
Arrange 30 cookies on a work surface. Fill 3 pastry bags (if you don't have pastry bags use a zip log bag and cut a whole at one of the edges) fitted with large plain tips with the chocolate pastry cream, the light-chocolate cream and the whipped cream. Pipe the chocolate pastry cream onto 12 cookies. Pipe the light-chocolate cream onto 6 cookies. Pipe the whipped cream onto the remaining 12 cookies. Stack the towers: Start with a chocolate pastry cream—topped cookie, then a light-chocolate cream—topped cookie, followed by a whipped cream—topped cookie, another chocolate pastry cream—topped cookie and ending with a whipped cream—topped cookie. Pipe a small dollop of any remaining chocolate pastry cream onto the top of each tower. Transfer the cookie towers to a serving platter and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before serving.

If you have any questions feel free to ask!
Happy Eating!

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