This is a post-script from last week's "no substitute" post. Upon further inspection, I've decided to leave a modified recipe from what I originally saw as a failed attempt:
The original recipe featured huge, dense, crackly, larger-than-life chocolate cookies. I rediscovered it in a mid-week stress-hormonal craze and could not wait to sink my teeth into those chewy dark chocolate babies!
Low and behold, due to my various ingredient substitutions--go figure--the outcome was a thinner, crispier version and I was terribly disappointed.
I've reconsidered my first verdict, however. The flavor in these sugar cookies is so satisfying and will of course improve with a good Dutch-process cocoa. I've been sharing them with friends all weekend, and everyone agrees that they're darn tasty. They would be fabulous over ice cream or as the cookie for an ice cream sandwich. Here's the recipe. See for yourself.
Chocolate Sugar Cookies
(adapted from Martha Stewart Living)
1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/2 to 3/4 c unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 c (1 stick) softened unsalted butter
1 1/2 c vegetable shortening -- for flatter, crispy cookies, use SmartBalance shortening or butter
1 large egg
1 1/2 t vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375o. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Whisk the dry ingredients together in a bowl and set aside. Cream butter and sugar together (by hand or mixer), until fluffy and pale. Mix in the shortening. Then add the egg and vanilla and mix until creamy. Gradually add the flour until just combined.
Drop the cookies (in the size of your choosing, but the recipe calls for huge ice cream scoop-sized portions) on baking sheets and bake until edges are firm, 18 to 20 minutes. (It actually didn't take quite that long for me.)
Cool and serve as desired.
Yield 12-16 large cookies.