Adding whole grains to sweet pastry seems to be a returning trend right now among some of the trendy bakeries here in Sweden.
I myself fell in love with spelt flour last year, using it as a substitution for regular wheat flour in the Cornmeal & Lime Muffins. The flour definitely added a change in texture and flavor, but in a good way of course. Browsing through the Instagram feed the other day, a chocolate cookie made with rye flour by Bageri Petrus caught my attention. After a quick google I found an interesting chocolate rye cookie recipe from Tartine Book No 3 (2013) by Chad Robertson. The book contains recipes for whole grain versions of pastry (!) from Tartine Bakery & Café based in San Francisco. Both the book and the bakery are new to me, but after baking these totally awesome cookies, which are so delicious and addictive, I want more. If I ever get to make that trip to the American west coast I will definitely pay this bakery a visit.
I can’t post this without mentioning the current situation. The passed couple of weeks have been filled with great sadness and frustration. Witnessing all these people, women, men and children fleeing for their lives from the war zones have vastly affected me. Yes, I admit shamefully, it was a horrible photo that finally got to me and made me realize the magnitude of it all. Baking cakes and cookies suddenly felt so meaningless and redundant. Here I was, in my warm kitchen, mixing sugars and butter, while my fellow humans slept outside in the rain at the Macedonian-Greek border with hardly any food or drink at hand. I felt such a despair and did’t know what to do. But then, streams of light found it’s way through the darkness, through the social media. People all over Europe, and in my hometown, who surely shared my feelings, began to help and welcoming the refugees as they crossed the borders. And people help in the way they can with money or personal time, collecting clothes, donating a one day salary to charity, cooking and selling lunch meals where all profit is donated but also, the meal itself are further given to the homeless and so on. I know the wars are still continuing nonetheless but I truly believe that reaching out and helping each other is far more constructive than the opposite. We need to cooperate, not disintegrate and hate. Small private initiatives which together can make a huge impact.
Make these cookies, sell them to family and friends and donate the money to a charity. Go, bake – and share.
Salted Chocolate Rye Cookies
Adapted from Tartine Book No 3: Modern Ancient Classic Whole by Chad Robertson. I split the original recipe and made half a batch which worked just fine. Also, I added a couple of more sprinkle options. The cookies can be kept for 3 days, stored in a airtight container. If they last that long…
200g / 7 oz. dark chocolate 70%
30g / 1 oz. butter
93g / 3.2 oz. whole-grain rye flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
168g / 6.9 oz. light muscovado sugar or light brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Maldon sea salt to sprinkle on top and/or chopped almonds, sesame seeds, chopped raw cocoa bits, peanut butter or any other nut butter or tahini.
- Carefully melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl/on a plate, placed over simmering water. Set aside and let cool slightly.
- Measure flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl, mix and set aside.
- Beat eggs fluffy and slowly add the sugar. Keep on whipping the eggs and sugar for 6 minutes until the batter has tripled in size.
- Add the vanilla and reserved melted chocolate-butter, mix until combined.
- Add the flour and mix until a soft, loose dough (it will firm up in the fridge). Cover and chill the dough for at least 30 minutes.
- Heat the oven to 180C/350F. On a parchment covered baking tray, using a rounded tablespoon or just a regular spoon, drop the cookies onto the tray. You can roll each cookie into a more round shaped ball if you’d like. Note! If the dough gets too soft, pop it back into the fridge and cool for a couple of minutes.
- Sprinkle sea salt and/or preferred topping onto each cookie. Bake for 8–10 minutes depending on size, until cookies have puffed. Let cool on a rack. The cookies will be soft.
- Filling with nut butter: This adds a little shazam to these beautiful cookies. Take the dough and flatten it into a circle in the palm of your hand. Place a dollop of nut butter or tahini in the middle and seal the ball by folding the sides towards the middle and then rolling it into a round ball. Place the cookies on the baking tray, sprinkle a topping on top or keep them natural, and bake for 10 minutes or slightly longer, until the cookies have puffed.
- Let cookies cool and enjoy them – humbly, respectful and thankfully.