Boy, oh boy. It's like I blinked, and it's Christmas week. It's about time I posted a new seasonal cookie here! And so here it is: an inside-out (or is that outside-in?), stuffed version of my Yuletide (A.K.A. Peppermint Bark) Cookies.
This recipe uses my basic oatmeal sugar cookie base--but with a twist. I cut the white sugar to 1/2 a cup and added 1/2 a cup of light brown sugar because I wanted a chewy exterior to contrast with the crunchy bits of candy cane in the interior.
An all-white sugar version is great, especially if you want a crispy cookie. (I know because I've made that version before a bunch of times.) But because this recipe is for a stuffed cookie, I wanted a soft, pliable dough that would hold up to scoping, stuffing, rolling, and baking and still come out of the oven chewy. I chose right!
The semisweet chocolate chips are just right for the filling. They're rich and chocolaty and sweet but not too sweet--they compliment, not overpower, the crushed candy canes.
When I put the first tray in the oven, I had my fingers crossed because I was a little afraid that the candy cane bits would melt and solidify and turn into a tooth-shatteringly hard chunk o' peppermint flavored rock candy. You know I breathed a sigh of relief when these guys came out just right.
Here's a tip, though: you don't won't big pieces of candy cane here. I put my candy canes in a plastic sandwich bag and used a pan to crush them down into mostly powder. If you have any pieces that are bigger than a pencil's eraser, keep smooshing.
The finished cookies come out perfectly round, perfectly plump. Kinda like Santa.
Makes 2 dozen cookies. (To see this recipe in process, check out Picturing Peppermint Bark-stuffed Cookies.)
|1 cup semisweet chocolate chips|
2 tablespoons milk
8 candy canes
1 stick butter
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon milk
|1 1/4 cups finely ground oatmeal|
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
- Melt the chocolate chips and milk over a double boiler or in the microwave. Add the crushed candy canes and mix. Let the mixture cool and solidify in the fridge until step 7.
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- In your Kitchen Aid or a large mixing bowl, cream together the creamables.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients and then add to the creamables. Mix together until smooth.
- In another large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients. Using a spatula, fold together until evenly distributed. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the creamables and wet ingredients. Mix until evenly combined.
- Shape dough into balls—about 2 tablespoons each.
- Remove the filling mixture from the fridge and stuff each dough ball with 1 heaping teaspoon of the mixture. Put the stuffed dough balls in the fridge for 5 minutes to firm up.
- Place chilled dough balls about 2 inches apart on Silpat- or parchment paper-lined cookie sheets.
- Bake at 350º for 10-12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are firm. Remove the cookie sheets from the oven and let stand for 2 minutes. Then place cookies on wire racks to cool.