Monday, August 15, 2011

Mocha Swirl Cookies


Sometimes you just need a cookie.
And the occasional fairy tale.

This past weekend I spent time with both. As a collector of the old sort of fairy tales, I can tell you they have a definite adult edge.  Most aimed to teach children the consequences of bad behavior with scare tactics and not-so-happy endings.  It's a far cry from the stories today that are meant to calm and lull children to sleep.  I find them so interesting, comparatively.

So, what goes with a grown-up fairy tale?  An equally grown-up dark chocolate and coffee flavored cookie. I've never been happier to sweep cookie crumbs from those pages of folklore.


Hours later, the caramel bug bit me -again!  I whipped up a batch of easy caramel frosting, and soon after was making caramel-filled-mocha-swirl-sandwiches.  Dreamy.




Mocha Swirl Cookies
Yield: 40 cookies                                                                                                                                                               [printable version]

3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp instant coffee (I used Starbucks' VIA)
2 oz. Dark chocolate, melted and cooled slightly

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter until creamy.
  3. Gradually add sugar to butter while mixer is running.
  4. Add egg and vanilla, beat well.  Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl and mix again until incorporated.
  5. With mixer on low speed, gradually add in flour mixture until just combined.
  6. Remove dough from mixer and divide into two even portions.  Dough should not be sticky.
  7. Return half of the dough to the mixer and add the instant coffee.  Mix until combined and dough is speckled with coffee granules. Use finely powdered instant coffee like Starbucks' VIA, or you may choose to grind standard instant coffee finer in a food processor.  Espresso powder would also work well in this recipe.  Remove coffee dough from mixer.
  8. Return the other half of dough to the mixer and add the melted chocolate.  Mix until well combined.
  9. Roll out each dough separately between two sheets of wax paper - approximately 1/4" thick.  Each piece should be a 9 x14" rectangle. Chill on baking sheets in the refrigerator, at least 1 hour.
  10. When dough is thoroughly chilled, top chocolate dough with coffee dough.  Gently press together the two dough pieces using a rolling pin.
  11. Let dough stand at room temperature until malleable.  
  12. Use a knife to even one side (down the 14" length) of the dough.  This gives you a nice even start for the spiral.
  13. Roll dough tightly, jelly-roll fashion, using the wax paper to guide the dough.  The chocolate portion of dough usually tears a little when rolling. When this happens - STOP- and pinch the dough back together before you continue to roll.  Remember, this is not a race to see how fast you can roll the dough.  Do this slowly and deliberately.  
  14. Cover the dough roll in wax paper, then in a length of plastic wrap.  Chill thoroughly, at least 1 hour.  Turn the dough halfway through chilling to make sure it doesn't become flat on one side.
  15. Heat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  16. Remove dough from refrigerator, uncover and slice in half with a sharp knife.  Place half of dough back in the refrigerator to keep cold.
  17. Cut dough into 1/4" rounds.
  18. Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes.  Let cool for 2-3 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack.
  19. Repeat with remaining dough.




Sweet Caramel Frosting
Yield: about 2 1/2 cups frosting                                                                                [printable version]

1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cubed
1/4 cup whole milk
Pinch of salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 - 2 cups confectioners' sugar

  1. In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, cubed butter, milk and pinch of salt.  
  2. Place over medium heat and bring to a bubble.
  3. Let mixture boil for 2 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  5. Let mixture cool in the refrigerator until barely warm.
  6. Place caramel in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  
  7. Whisk caramel for 1 minute at high speed.  
  8. Add confectioners' sugar and beat on low speed until just combined, then beat at high speed for an additional 1-2 minutes.
This mixture will fill 20 sandwich cookies, or frost 18 cupcakes.


90 comments:

Bella@Bellabeforeandafter.blogspot.com said...

YUP those pretty much sound incredibly delish... and they look so pretty too. Thanks for sharing.

Hugs, Bella :)
**AMAZE ME AUGUST** @ Bella Before and After Any projects, recipes, diy welcome.
**PARTY PLANNING TUESDAYS** @ Euro Style Cakes. All your party planning tips, decorations, invitations, and recipes welcome at my NEW party.

Lauren at Keep It Sweet said...

These cookies look fabulous, especially with the caramel frosting! I love your photography as usual.

Amanda said...

SO beautiful! You are pretty dang talented girl. I adore these!

bridget {bake at 350} said...

Oh my goodness! Those are just gorgeous! The cookies, the pictures, the recipe...it's all perfection. ♥

vanillasugarblog said...

yes indeed you have mad skills
these are perfectly rolled.
i made these swirl cookies once with toffee bits in them and they were so good.
i think, after seeing your photos, I see how I can make the lines more cleaner. you made the doughs exact same size. duh a duh moment for me lol

Marnely Rodriguez said...

Loveeee the look of these!

Blog is the New BLack said...

These look incredible! Not to mention, so pretty!

Katie said...

Be still my heart - those look amazing! Yum. (Also, ditto on the fairy tales. Those things were serious business.)

ktmade
http://ktmade.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

If I did that the swirls would be all warped! As always these look perfect. The caramel frosting I think is the real showstopper!
Heather

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Awwww, those are so pretty and perfect! You are definitely a perfectionist. Great clicks too.

Cheers,

Rosa

jose manuel said...

Preciosas las galletas, me encantan.

Saludos

Emma said...

After combining chocolate and caramel in some pots de creme this past weekend, I'm itchin' for more chococaramel delights!

Add in the coffee, and kablamo, what a cookie!

pharmbelle85 said...

These look so amazing! And they sound great. You are so talented :)

Honey said...

BEAUUUUUTIFULLL! Bet they taste good too...

linda said...

an elegant cookie & the taste must be awesome.
the dough looks so wonderful & rolled out to perfection.

when does your cookbook debut? cannot wait!

sophistimom said...

Wow. Those are perfect. Seriously. My Inferiority Complex is shouting at me.

Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. said...

Those look awesome! I tried to make rolled cookies once. Let's just say they looked NOTHING like yours! You are so talented!

Heather Ozee said...

I can't tell which I'm most intrigued by... the cookie or the book! Those photos are amazing. We miss you!

Amy said...

These cookies look amazing! I want a few with a glass of milk and a fairy tale before bed! How sweet is that!?

Maggie @ A Bitchin' Kitchen said...

These look awesome! I love the idea of sandwiching them with caramel frosting. Just out of curiousity, are these more of a crispy or chewy cookie?

Becca said...

Dang, these looked good before, but this the frostng they look even more delectable! Yummy, yummy!

Sue said...

The caramel frosting looks SO smooth:) I love homemade sandwich cookies and your perfect spirals put them in another beautiful realm! Have a wonderful week, Heather! :)

Lili said...

Each one a perfect swirl and I just adore the idea of a grown-up dark chocolate and coffee flavored cookie to go with the fairy tales of yore! (I must look up the one you have pictured.) And caramel anything is always a welcome addition. Mmmmmm xoxo ~Lili

marla {family fresh cooking} said...

Easy caramel frosting, fairy tales, swirly cookies and a giant pot of coffee. Heavenly :)

Kate@katescakesandbakes said...

I think I'm ALWAYS in need of a cookie- especially one of these perfectly formed chocolate, mocha and caramel spirals!

ButterYum said...

I've made similar swirl cookies with chocolate and vanilla dough... made them into checkerboard cookies too. Your cookies ooze perfection - magazine worthy!

:)
ButterYum

Kulsum@JourneyKitchen said...

wow. Those SO neat. Caramel frosting. I need to make this to impress myself as soon as possible

myfudo said...

Does that taste soft? It does look soft to me. Looks of a perfect cookies.

Lora said...

These are mesmerizing. I love caramel anything and that frosting looks heavenly.

The Procrastobaker said...

Your swirls have come out just perfectly! I tried something similar once and just ended up with yummy, but smooshed, wiggles :) The flavours going on here are delicious sounding too, lovely photos!

Silvia said...

Estupenda receta y fantásticas fotos.

Besos.

warmvanillasugar said...

These are beautiful! Thanks for this!

SprinkleBakes said...

For those asking... these cookies are ever-so-slightly chewy and soft. They should be stored in an air-tight container or in a zip-top bag with the air removed.

Thank you! xoxo

adozeneggs said...

I absolutely cannot wait to try these!! I didn't realize from the pic on FB that the filling is caramel.
OMG Caramel AND Coffee??!!!
I just don't know what could possibly be any better.
Thanks for posting!!
And I totally agree on the fairy tales.

lisaiscooking said...

Love the look of the swirl, and then I saw the caramel frosting. Fantastic! I have to try these.

Darla@ Bakingdom said...

Your swirls are so perfectly swirled!! These are beautiful, and they sound delicious.

Lynne @ 365 Days of Baking said...

These are perfection in both presentation and taste. Job well done. Th are even too pretty to eat. Gorgeous pictures!!

Erin said...

These cookies are so pretty! I love the idea of the caramel frosting center.

Evan @swEEts said...

These are the most perfect swirl cookies I've ever seen and that caramel frosting sounds to die for! I can't wait to try these..

Kathrn | Dramatic Pancake said...

These look so sinfully delicious, and absolutely beautiful photos!

Anonymous said...

The contrast is gorgeous. They look wonderful :)
Samantha

The Vanilla Bean Baker said...

Just like in the fairy tales, there's always a happy ending. Your cookies are beautiful, the accompanying post is poetic.

Lauren Hairston said...

"East of the Sun and West of the Moon" was one of my favorite stories as a child! I need to go re-read it (preferably while eating a caramel-filled mocha swirl cookie!).

Jen Murphy said...

Thank you for this reminder to read fairy tales as adults. The book East of the Sun and West of the Moon is both scary and beautiful at the same time, and the illustrations are divine!

Anonymous said...

love your pictures, your recipes and your site!!

Junia said...

wow, these look fantastic!!! i want to make swirl cookies one day too!

Russell at Chasing Delicious said...

These swirls look perfect! I'm not sure I could ever roll something so pretty. The recipe sounds delicious too! Yum!

Anonymous said...

East of the Sun, West of the Moon is one of my favorite stories! East by Edith Pattou is a wonderful spin on the fairy tale. =] and these cookies look so pretty! I want to make them for my mum. She loves mocha and caramel. I bet she'd adore the combination.

Tres Delicious said...

Your swirl cookies are so wonderful, so pretty and so mouth watering. I don't think I can make them as good as yours. Love the photos.

Anonymous said...

These look amazing!!!! 1 cup butter how many grams is? or do you mean melted butter? :)

Culinary School: Three Semesters of Life, Learning, and Loss of Blood said...

I had a chef at culinary school ("Culinary School: 101 Things Every Culinary Student Should Know Before They Go" - http://amzn.to/l1k6wg) who said you eat with your eyes, first. If that is true, than those pretty cookies have fed me very, very well.

Jennifurla said...

Super idea, looks delish as always.

Su-yin said...

These are gorgeous, you've managed to make them so even as well. Bookmarked - I think these would make a great Christmas gift! :)

Allison said...

I tried to make these and I thought I followed your instructions to a T and my dough was so dry I couldn't get it to roll no matter what I did! Any tips or suggestions?

p.s. I made the icing... it was fantastic.

Gabriela, clavo y canela said...

Espectaculares :)

SprinkleBakes said...

Hi Allison :)

Hmm....dry dough. Here are some things I can think of right off the top of my head.

1. Spoon (don't scoop) flour into measuring cups. Scooping can compress the flour into the measuring cups and make dough and batter too dense.
2. Over-mixing can make dough dense and tough. This may contribute to hard-to-roll dough. Mix the initial plain dough until just incorporated since it goes through more mixing later.

3. How long did you let the dough stand before you rolled it? It should be pretty malleable and not too cold. That said, the chocolate layer is prone to tear because it stretches over the coffee layer as it is rolled. I found you have to roll 1/2", then pinch the tears together, roll, pinch, roll pinch.

I'm glad you loved the frosting! So sorry the cookies didn't turn out the first time around. If I think of any other troubleshooting tips, I'll post in this thread.

Thanks for the feedback!
xoxo
-Heather

SugarBeam said...

absolute genius! vintage/retro goodies LOVE IT!!!

sweetpeaskitchen.com said...

These cookies look incredible! Especially as sandwich cookies...yummy! :)

Valerie said...

I love everything about those cookies! Their shape, their look, i'm sure i'd love their taste! And they're soo well done... that's amazing!

Amanda said...

you are amazingly talented!

Peggy said...

Oooh these look so pretty! And great idea with the caramel frosting for sandwiches =)

Anonymous said...

ooooh that story was my FAVORITE fairy tale as a child and no one has ever heard of it! love it!

Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes said...

I thought these cookies were perfect until I saw you spreading your caramel on them. PERFECT! AMAZING!! LOVELY!!!

Thanks for a fantastic recipe and post.

Ellen said...

I made these yesterday! I had just the cookie part last night at 9pm cuz I just couldn't, ya know, wait. Amazing. Had a the funky end cookies for breakfast. Frosted them last night and put them away in the frig, and had my first mocha swirl sandwich after din-din tonight. Done for the day...Nothing needs to top that cookie!! I wasn't sure about the frosting with the cookie, but it really does bring out the mocha flavors. I did use espesso powder in my cookie and it was just great. And, thank you so much for the layering and rolling techniques. I've struggled for about 10 years with a peppermint pinwheel cookie I make for my xmas tins. No more struggles thanks to your helpful hints of really thin layers, a clean edge and taking the time. Just so, so good. Thanks, Heather!

P.S. Your champagne cupcakes were one of my first recipes on our new blog, bakeitwithbooze. Thanks for the inspiration!

foodingdo said...

Hello! great recipe and yummy pictures, we would be glad if you could submit it to our site. Cheers :)

Anonymous said...

Hi! My dough is chilling in the fridge right now and to pass the time (and prevent myself from eating the dough while waiting) I decided to attempt the caramel frosting. I'm having a problem thickening it up, though. I keep adding confectioner's sugar but I'm afraid that will diminish the caramel taste after too much. Any hints on thickening up the frosting? (I don't have a stand mixer so I'm thinking my hand mixer was maybe not up to the task...)

SprinkleBakes said...

If you've beaten the heck out of it and it still isn't firming up, you may want to stick in in the fridge for a little bit. :) The butter content should make it solidify without you having to add so much confectioners' sugar.

Hope this helps!

-Heather

Five of US said...

Not a fan of coffee, but the chocolate and caramel part are making my mouth water. And I recognized the book because I have the same one here. Have you read East by Edith Pattou? Such a great rendition.

Noelle said...

WOW, this sounds and looks delicious!!

Anonymous said...

Making some right now! I hope mine come out looking as nice!
How big is the diameter of your cookies? 'Cause mine came out smallish. Then again, I tend to make my cookies on the smaller side of HUGE.

Haley said...

Took your recipe and adapted it into Cinnamon Roll cookies with chopped dates. Delicious! Wish I could have taken pictures for you to see.

Artesana said...

esta tengo que hacerla, es una preciosidad de entrada.gracias.

Anonymous said...

These look fantastic but taste wise, they were a little underwhelming. I followed the recipe to the letter except for using milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate. They taste like very buttery biscuits, very little chocolate or coffee taste and they were quite small. But hey, they look gorgeous and I'm so proud of myself for tackling the layering and rolling. Thanks so much for the tips.

Anonymous said...

I made this frosting last night for a cake but I could not get it to thicken up! I doubled the recipe since I was not sure there would be enough, and I also used skim milk instead of whole milk. I didn't have any extra confectioner's sugar, so I just used the frosting anyway and propped the cake up on one side so the top layer wouldn't slip off. It still tastes delicious, although I'm not sure where I went wrong.

Macy said...

I always wondered how they make swirl cookies.. and here you go.. mystery solved.. Thanks tons.. :D Super cute.. :)

Cat Kawasaki said...

Did you come up with the dough recipe yourself or just add coffee/chocolate to a sugar cookie recipe?

SprinkleBakes said...

Hi! This dough isn't adapted from a sugar cookie recipe. Most sugar cookie recipes have a lower baking powder to flour ratio.

Are you having trouble? May I help further?

Cat Kawasaki said...

I'm actually going to try baking these very soon.

I guess my main question was how did you go about inventing the recipe? Sometimes I will change recipes I find to suit what I want to do, but other times I need to create a new recipe outline, which obviously takes longer and requires more trial and error.

applemartinian said...

These are amazing! They taste soo good!

Vernice said...

I tried them recently but it probably is because of the region i stay in that the dough softens real quick. And when it enters the over, the butter melts out and the cookie loses its shape D: they look like muffin toppers D:

Should I try lessening the butter then D:

Bakeca Incontri Roma said...

This is an amazing recipe! I like it so much!

Lucia said...

Hi Heather, thank you for this delicious recipe(but very difficult!), i just made these swirls but, how you can see, they are imperfects!!!
Ciao

Anonymous said...

I made these cookies but wasn't in love with them.

The carmel frosting was the best part and I'm keeping the frosting recipe.

Cathleen said...

These cookies look perfect! And so cute too!

Nisha said...

These look so much better than the ones i made few months back from another recipe :-/
I'm wondering if the texture of your cookies is so good because of the eggs, because I had made eggless ones.
Anyway nice pictures too! I like your blog, following it now.

Indrė said...

Tried these. Taste is amazing. But was not able to make swirls - choco dough was too fragile. So I made striped cubes.

Kassandra Reinhardt said...

My dough turned out so dry, I'm not sure what went wrong.
Maybe this is dumb but how fast or for how long should I have been mixing it?

Kassandra

Heather Baird said...

Hi Kassandra!

I'm sorry you ran into some trouble! The dough should be mixed until just combined. I'm wondering if maybe the chocolate you used had something to do with it - was it both flavors of dough or just one? Sometimes chocolate manufacturers get sneaky and not put cocoa butter into their chocolate. And that will make a huge different in cookie dough.

Anonymous said...

what temperature do you bake them on?

Heather Baird said...

Step 15. Heat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

xo

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