Friday, November 12, 2010

Chocolate Toffee Butter Cookies, Christmas Cookies week 7

When I first saw this recipe in Cook's Country, it was four years ago.  I thought to myself then that it would make a lovely Christmas cookie and decided I should make it.  It didn't happen that year or any other since, until now.  This countdown of Christmas Cookies has inspired me to make a few cookies that I have long wanted to try but haven't because I get caught up in the bustle of the season.  What usually happens to my grand plans for making a dozen varieties of Christmas cookies is they whittle down to only two or three varieties which are mixed up at the last minute.  I am, if nothing else, an expert procrastinator.  (I once started reading an article about procrastination, only to put it down planning on finishing it later.  I never did get back to that article.)

The instructions for these cookies said that I should split the dough in half, rolling each half into a log before refrigerating them.  I am always looking to shortcut the process of recipes, especially now that I have two little ones whose needs often interrupt my forays into the kitchen.  If a recipe calls for rolling out cookie dough and then cutting it, I turn it into a slice and bake cookie, if it is a slice and bake cookie, I turn it into a drop cookie like I did with these.  I used my cookie scoop to portion out balls of dough and then using the floured bottom of a glass to flatten each of them into a round.  This worked marvelously.

The cookies turned out quite a bit larger than I had expected.  Perhaps this was because I skipped the step of chilling the dough, but I think not since my kitchen was quite chilly when I made them.  I liked that because of their size, they have different texture within each cookie.  The edges are crisp and as you reach the center it becomes more soft and chewy, encompassing the best of both worlds. 

The recipe stated to completely cool the cookies on the pan before removing them.  I found that if you left them on the pan too long (i.e. until they were completely cooled) you were going to lose some in the removal process.  To compromise, I loosened them all from the pan at 3 minutes out of the oven but left them still sitting on it to finish cooling.  If you try at 2 minutes, they will still be soft and break apart.  If you try much after 3 minutes they will have permanently bonded to your pan. Somehow in the process of mixing up these cookies, Little Man managed to get cookie dough up his nose.  After his experience I can say with some certainty that doing so is neither pleasant nor satisfying.  I do not recommend trying to eat these this way.

I managed to break my chocolate as I was trying to melt it.  I'm not sure how, one second it was fine and the next it wasn't.  I was supposed to be able to drizzle on decorative, delicate swirls of chocolate and then sprinkle on the toasted pecans.  Not wanting to waste the chocolate, which still tasted fine, or waste the last remaining minutes of nap time starting over, I used a knife to spread it on the the tops of the cookies like a frosting and then dipped them each in the pecans.  Using the chocolate and nuts so heavily on each of the cookies caused there to be a shortage and a few remained without.  The toffee flavor is so much more pronounced on these, so if you don't care for chocolate feel free to leave it out.  While I like the plain ones, I prefer the chocolate ones.  The pecans give these cookies that last little nudge over the top from really good to excellent.

Chocolate Toffee Butter Cookies
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon table salt
16 tablespoons unsalted butter (2 sticks), softened
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup Heath Toffee Bits (without chocolate)
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup pecans toasted and chopped fine

1.  In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.  In the bowl of your mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium for about 3 minutes or until very fluffy. Add the vanilla and the egg.

2.  On low speed, add half of the flour to the mixer.  After it is mixed in add the second half, mixing until the flour is no longer visible.  Stir in the toffee.  (I may experiment with adding the nuts in as well so that they aren't relying on the chocolate to hold them  to the cookie.)

3.  Preheat oven to 350°F.  Using a 2 tablespoon scoop, portion out the cookie dough about 2 inches apart onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  (Okay, them permanently adhering to the pan makes more sense.  I must have missed this when I read the recipe.)  Dip the bottom of a glass into flour and press each ball down until they are about 1/4 inch thick.  Repeat dipping in flour for each one.  (Optional: chill in fridge for about an hour before baking.)

4.  Bake cookies until just browned around edges, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool cookies completely on baking sheets.

5. Melt chocolate and mix with oil in bowl until smooth. Spread each cookie with melted chocolate or drizzle chocolate over cookies with spoon and top with pecans. Let chocolate set, about 1 hour.

note: I used a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop, ending up with 2 dozen cookies.  If you prefer smaller cookies try using a 1 tablespoon scoop but remember to check them since the cooking time will vary a bit.

Please don't forget to check out all the other submissions for Week 7 of the Twelve Weeks of Christmas:


  1. Oh my gosh, those look delicious and dangeous!! LOL!!

  2. Chocolate, Toffee, and Butter... Can I come over? :) They look and sound amazing!

  3. Hmm - cookie dough up the nose is not a pleasant thing - I hope he ate several to compensate!

  4. Never a dull moment with kids in the kitchen:) Your cookies look absolutely beautiful and delicious! Great choice!

  5. I've never seen anything like these before! Yum!

  6. Oh my gosh! These look so tasty! (I skip steps too. It add to the creativity I think)! =o)

  7. These look AMAZING!! Will definitely have to make them!! Thanks for posting the recipe!

  8. Wow these look fantastic! I am bookmarking these right now -- thank you for sharing!

  9. Wow, those cookies look so buttery and rich. This would be almost like eating a pecan version of Almond Roca candy. Excellent.

  10. What wonderful cookies! I love the topping of chocolate and pecans!

  11. Hello there scrumptious cookies!!!

    LOVE your cherry glasses! - I have the same ones!!! :-)

    Happy Weekend!
    ~avril :-)

  12. Those look great! Love how big those balls of dough are on the baking sheet. LOVE toffee and chocolate.


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