Today is Family Day here in beautiful British Columbia, and it’s the first time we’re celebrating this newly instated holiday. I certainly have no complaints about the government creating new holidays, I say the more the merrier! To celebrate the occasion I decided to talk to you about cookies!
Now, for those of you who grew up with an English background and Christmas pudding with all the sauces at Christmas time, I want you to imagine the taste of rum sauce. For those of you who missed out on this amazing concoction, I want you to imagine the most velvety, rich, butter, caramel flavour spiked with rum. Got that?
Ok, now I want everyone to think of a spicy, warm gingerbread cookie. Great. Now imagine those two things joined together in a wonderful marriage of rum, spice, and brown sugar goodness, with chocolate chips and walnuts thrown in for good measure. That is what these cookies taste like.
They’re really a simple drop cookie, made with many ingredients you would normally find in a chocolate chip cookie, except that there’s no white sugar which gives them a rich butterscotch taste and a soft, chewy texture. However, while the original recipe from Joyce White’s Brown Sugar called for just walnuts, I could not resist substituting half of what the recipe called for with chocolate chips. I also managed to add in some whole wheat flour to make them “healthier”:)
Once you have your dough whipped up simply drop spoonfuls of it onto a cookie sheet. You should try the dough at this point too…just to make sure it’s ok.
After they’ve been in the oven you’re left with beautiful cookies flavoured with cinnamon, cloves and rum, studded with chocolate chips and walnuts. Go make these…NOW.
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
Pinch of salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup walnuts (You could also substitute pecans or blanched almonds if you wanted)
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
8 Tbsp (1/2 cup) butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 Tbsp dark rum or 1 tsp rum extract (In my opinion dark rum is the only way to go)
1-2 Tbsp milk (I used one)
In a small bowl mix together the flours, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Coarsely chop the nuts. Set aside.
Combine the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Using a handheld mixer set at medium high, beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, scraping the bowl once or twice throughout. Add the egg and rum and beat until well blended.
Using a spoon, stir in the chopped nuts and chocolate chips. Add half of the flour mixture and mix well, then add the tbsp of milk. Add the rest of the flour mixture, mixing only until blended.
Cover the bowl and refrigerate the batter for at least an hour, or longer if desired.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the cookie batter from the fridge. Using a heaping tablespoon (the recipe said teaspoon but I like my cookies larger), drop balls of dough onto an ungreased baking sheet, placing about 2 inches apart.
Set the pan of cookies in the center of the preheated oven on the middle rack. Bake the cookie for 9-11 minutes, or until they are pale brown and firm, and lightly browned on the bottom. Remove the pan from the oven and let the cookies set for a minute or two on a wire rack. Then, remove the cookies from the pan with a spatula and cool completely on the rack.
Bake the remaining batter in batches, one pan at a time, in the same way.
(Adapted from Brown Sugar by Joyce White)