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Chocolate Crackle Cookies

  • yield: Makes about 4 dozen

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Ingredients

  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup Dutch cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/3 cups light-brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for rolling

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Heat oven to 350 degrees. Chop bittersweet chocolate into small bits, and melt over medium heat in a heat-proof bowl or the top of a double boiler set over a pan of simmering water. Set aside to cool. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.

  2. Step 2

    In the bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and light-brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add melted chocolate. With mixer on low speed, alternate adding dry ingredients and milk until just combined. Divide the dough into quarters, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 2 hours.

  3. Step 3

    On a clean countertop, roll each portion of dough into a log approximately 16 inches long and 1 inch in diameter, using confectioners’ sugar to prevent sticking. Wrap logs in plastic wrap, and transfer to a baking sheet. Chill for 30 minutes. Cut each log into 1-inch pieces, and toss in confectioners’ sugar, a few at a time. Using your hands, roll the pieces into a ball shape. If any of the cocoa-colored dough is visible, roll dough in confectioners’ sugar again to coat completely. Place the cookies 2 inches apart on a Silpat-lined baking sheet. Bake until cookies have flattened and the sugar splits, 12 to15 minutes.

  4. Step 4

    Transfer from oven to a wire rack to let cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, February 2003

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Reviews (21)

  • 21 Dec, 2012

    I love this recipe! I've made it 4 times now. I always forget that the dough is not like cookie dough, but like brownie batter. Make sure you do chill it thoroughly before working with it. I freeze it because it stays cold longer so it doesn't melt in your hands. Dust your hands w/powdered sugar while you are rolling the balls. Instead of rolling into a log while chilling, I just press it flat in plastic, then cut 1x1" cubes before forming into balls. YUM! Consistent, and delicious!

  • 21 Dec, 2012

    I love this recipe! I've made it 4 times now. I always forget that the dough is not like cookie dough, but like brownie batter. Make sure you do chill it thoroughly before working with it. I freeze it because it stays cold longer so it doesn't melt in your hands. Dust your hands w/powdered sugar while you are rolling the balls. Instead of rolling into a log while chilling, I just press it flat in plastic, then cut 1x1" cubes before forming into balls. YUM! Consistent, and delicious!

  • 8 Dec, 2012

    I was working with this dough forming it into balls and getting very frustrated with the dough melting in my hands and making a big mess. I started to write a negative review to vent my frustration, when I realized that other reviewers liked these cookies! I went back to my dough and worked with it coming out of the freezer. After forming lumpy balls, I was able to form rounder balls after rolling them in sugar. I rechilled the dough balls before baking and the cookies came out nicely...

  • 8 Nov, 2011

    Delicious! I skipped a step on accident and they still tasted wonderful. I chilled the dough for a couple hours then just rolled the balls and baked them from there (without rolling them out and forming into logs first). I'm certain the cookies would be even better if I followed the directions. But even still, mine turned out tasty and beautiful.

  • 15 Feb, 2011

    : by far the best "crinkle" recipe I've used. Chilled the dough for 24hrs., dusted hands with sugar before rolling, they turned out perfectly; so rich and cakey!

  • 17 Jan, 2011

    The Chocolate Crackles are phenomenal! I make them every year during the holidays. :)

    Recipe is very easy to follow - I didn't find them to be a mess at all (the 1st comment). When you roll them into balls your hands do get a little chocolaty but this is part of baking, people: down and dirty. ;)

  • 20 Dec, 2010

    I just made these yesterday and they are very tasty but were quite a mess. The Chocolate was melting all over my hands when I tried to roll them in balls. I will try ngood's tip about putting in granulated sugar first. Thanks.

  • 17 Dec, 2010

    The dough should be sticky once all the ingredients are mixed. Perhaps too much liquid caused the dough to become more cake batter. After refrigerating the dough, let it soften at room temperature for a couple of minutes. Then, break off a corner section and roll it into a ball. The dough tends to be on the sticker side once it's softened. So I would always have a bowl of iced water to dip my hands in before rolling two to three balls.

  • 6 Dec, 2010

    please help. I have followed the recipe twice, but it comes out more like a cake mix and not doughy at all. Cannot roll into balls, either befor or after refrigeration. Please advise

  • 24 Nov, 2010

    love the picture! look at the ears. thx for the tip!

  • 16 Feb, 2010

    Wonderful! Toss dough pieces in granlated sugar, roll into balls, and then powdered sugar. Very little melting or mess. Store in container with a slice of bread to keep soft and chewy. I even froze these for a week, and they were good as gold when defrosted. Definitely a "do again".

  • 6 Feb, 2010

    FYI, the granulated sugar is missing from the recipe. The dough gets rolled in the granulated sugar first then rolled in the confectioner's sugar. Also, another version of the recipe calls for 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar versus 1 1/3. Not sure if that makes a big difference.

  • 5 Jan, 2010

    is there a way to keep the cookies soft for more than a day. mine seem to get hard quickly.

  • 21 Dec, 2009

    I made the recipe for these that is in the "Cookies" book. In the picture, the cookies appeared to be sort of domed on the top. Mine come out on the flatter side - not totally flat, but flatter than the picture. Might this be from not leaving enough space between the cookies?

  • 27 Dec, 2008

    Rinsing your hands after rolling every few cookies in cold water also helps keep them from melting into your palms. Definitely a messy cookie to make, but well worth the mess!

  • 22 Dec, 2008

    Need to chill thoroughly before rolling or it will melt in your hands.

  • 22 Dec, 2008

    Need to chill thoroughly before rolling or it will melt in your hands.

  • 22 Dec, 2008

    Need to chill thoroughly before rolling or it will melt in your hands.

  • 15 Jan, 2008

    This cookie is the most requested/commented on by my friends and family. I sometimes add 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips to the dough and a couple of teaspoons of Tia Maria for a truly decadent treat.

  • 2 Jan, 2008

    These are really, really tasty and impressive looking. They've definitely earned a place in my permanent holiday cookie recipe collection.

  • 28 Dec, 2007

    Rolling the dough balls in granulated sugar before confectioner's sugar yields a pristine white sugar coating. This recipe is great for several quick batches of impressive holiday gifts.