When I was in high school, my BFF Melany turned taught me a thing or two about candy. Before we met, my go-to candy was a Snickers bar, or Abba Zabba taffy.
But it was Melany that turned me onto the wonders of the chocolate orange. You know–that ball of chocolate that you give a good whack to separate into segments. The deep, chocolate goodness with just the tiniest hint of orange flavoring. Delish! Every so often, I will pick up a chocolate orange, and feel like a giggly high school girl talking about boys with my best friend.
I was thinking about chocolate oranges when I saw a post awhile back that Maris did about a very citrusy cookie with white chocolate and cranberries. Sounds good, right? Then she ditched the cranberries and added chocolate chunks. That got my attention.
I read her post on the very same day that I that I scored a big bag of beautiful organic oranges at the grocery store.
Couple that with the fact that Hubby had a long week of travel, and I thought he would like to come home to freshly baked cookies.
Sometimes Kismet happens.
Lucky for him, I was in the mood for something chocolatey with just a hint of orange–just like the chocolate oranges of my youth.
The fact that I just referred to something “of my youth” makes me officially older than dirt. Still I press on…
So, I whipped up my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, and made a few simple alterations: I added a bunch of orange zest, switched to dark chocolate chips, and threw in some ground ginger. The resulting cookie has a taste very reminiscent of that chocolate orange candy that I remember.
Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies with Just a Hint of Orange
Mix the flour, baking soda, salt, and ground ginger in the bowl of a stand mixer.
Zest a small orange, being careful not to go as deep as the white pith. You should get a couple of tablespoons of zest.
Briskly whisk some melted butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until the sugar starts to melt a bit. Stir in a tablespoon or two of orange zest.
Add a whole egg, and an extra egg yolk. You know, just for fun. Actually, the extra yolk acts as an extra binder to give the cookies the crisp exterior with the chewy interior that I adore.
Whisk until the egg and yolk are well incorporated.
Pour the mixture into the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined.
Grab a bag of dark chocolate chips. Now, normally, I am strictly a semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips kind of gal. But with all of the zesty orange goodness in this dough, I had to go with dark chocolate. Trust me on this.
Stir in the dark chocolate chips until they are evenly distributed. Cover the dough with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour, or until you get back to it. I often make cookie dough the night before I plan to bake cookies, then let it hang out in the fridge overnight.
When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees (F.) Line the baking sheets with a silicone baking mat, or parchment paper.
Scoop dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until cookies are golden brown around the edges, and centers are set. Cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheets, before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
The result? A cookie that is crispy on the outside, but still a little gooey on the inside. The melty dark chocolate chips ooze a bit, and that hint of orange gives a wonderful finish. Fabulous!
And the best part? They made Hubby smile after a long day on the road.
Hint of Orange Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes about 4 dozen cookies
2 ¼ C. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. ground ginger
¾ C. granulated sugar
¾ C. packed brown sugar
1C. unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled.
1 large whole egg
1 large egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 ½ Tbs. freshly grated orange zest
2 C. dark chocolate chips (12 oz. bag)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper or baking mats; set aside.
- In a medium bowl, add flour, baking soda, salt and ground ginger. Whisk to combine; set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together melted butter with the sugars until well combined. Add the whole egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Whisk to incorporate.
- Pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture, stirring until just combined.
- Stir in the chocolate chips.
- Cover and refrigerate dough for 1 hour.
- Using a small cookie scoop, scoop small dough balls onto prepared baking sheets, 2 inches apart.
- Bake at 375 for 10 minutes, or until golden brown around the edges.
- Remove from oven and cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely.