Today sounds like the perfect day to get snowed in! Cold, snowy weather always makes me wish we could just hibernate. Rather than brave the chilly temperatures and trudge through foot-high snow, I'd love to stay curled up on the couch in front of the fireplace with a mug of hot cocoa in hand -- or nibbling on cookies that offer the rich, comforting flavors of hot cocoa. These cookies do just that.
Their chewy, fudgy, chocolaty base is studded with mini chocolate chips and mini marshmallow bits, and a scoop of hot cocoa mix in the batter really comes through in the flavor of the finished cookie. They're slathered with a layer of melted semisweet chocolate and topped with even more marshmallow bits, just to make them extra indulgent. I highly recommend curling up on the couch with a plateful and watching the snow fall outside. They're also the perfect post-shoveling or post-playing-in-the-snow treat if you actually do like to or have to go out there.
Mini Hot Cocoa Cookies (adapted from Two Peas & Their Pod)
Makes about 70 cookies
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in 4 pieces
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup hot cocoa mix (I used Lake Champlain)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup Mallow Bits, plus extra for decorating
Place butter and 2 cups chocolate chips in 4-cup liquid measuring cup, and microwave in 1-minute increments, stirring in between, until chocolate is melted and smooth. Set aside.
Whisk together flour, hot cocoa mix, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl.
In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle, beat brown sugar and eggs on medium-low speed until combined. Add vanilla, and mix until combined.
Add dry ingredients, and mix on low speed. Add melted chocolate, and mix until combined. Scrape down bowl, and mix again.
Add mini chocolate chips and Mallow bits, and mix until combined.
Transfer cookie dough to small bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with Silpat mats (or parchment paper). Using small cookie scoop, scoop cookie dough and space on cookie sheets. (I used 12- by 17-inch cookie sheets and fit 20 cookies per sheet.)
Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, for 10 minutes, turning sheet halfway through baking. Cookies will be set but may not look done. Let cool on sheets for about 3 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.
Melt 1/2 cup chocolate chips in microwave in 30-second increments, stirring in between, until smooth. Using mini offset spatula, spread a small amount of melted chocolate on top of 5 cookies. Sprinkle about 5 Mallow Bits on top of chocolate. Repeat until you run out of melted chocolate.
Melt remaining 1/2 cup chocolate chips in microwave, spread chocolate over remaining cookies, and top with Mallow Bits as directed above. Let chocolate set up before serving.
I'm not a winter person at all, but one bite of these cookies definitely made me appreciate the season just a little bit -- and chased some of the winter blues away.
Are you a winter person?