The coffee machine cranks into life and the smell of fresh coffee wakes us all up. The first customers of the day arrive for our handmade pastries and a caffeine fix. Four legged customers rock up for a dog treat, tired from their morning walk. Thursday mornings bring Elaine Kingett’s Mindful Creative Writing Workshop to the Café. Elaine has been a customer since we opened in November 2017 and her group fill up the meeting room downstairs with creativity and lively discussion. Abi and I start thinking about cookies for them. Preferably chocolate, always warm. This recipe ticks all the boxes with an added hint of cardamom and is gloriously rich. Use a good quality dark chocolate. It pays dividends. You could cool them down and use them to make an ice cream sandwich if they last that long. Enjoy!
Helen Collier is a food writer, baker and co-owner of The Last Crumb Café in Stoke Newington thelastcrumb co.uk
For Elaine’s writing workshops visit write-it-down.co.uk
Makes 16-18 cookies.
225g unsalted butter, softened350g light muscovado sugar
50g caster sugar
2 tsps vanilla extract
350g plain flour
50g cocoa powder
2 tsps bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp ground cardamom
Pinch of salt
400g 70% dark chocolate, chopped
Line a baking sheet with baking paper. Preheat oven to 200°/Fan 180°/Gas Mark 6. Cream butter and sugar with an electric whisk or stand mixer until light and fluffy.
Add eggs and vanilla extract and continue to beat until fully combined. Sieve cocoa, flour, bicarb and cardamom into the mixture. Add a pinch of salt. Stir to combine. As it starts to come together add the chocolate chips and stir until you have a dough like mixture. The dough can be frozen at this point. Lay a sheet of baking paper flat and place the dough in a sausage shape along the middle of the paper. Use the paper to gently roll into a cylinder shape. Tuck the ends in, wrap in cling film and freeze for up to 3 months. Just chop off discs as and when you need them and bake from frozen.
Drop tablespoons of cookie dough onto the baking sheet allowing for the fact that they will spread whilst baking. Bake for 10-12 minutes. They will still be soft when you remove them from the oven. Allow to cool a little on tray before removing.