This December, over 600 bloggers took part across the world in the first annual Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. And today is the big reveal day. We’ve definitely done our part to revive the ailing US post office with all the packages flying around the country in the last week! So without further ado, here is my reveal: Chocolate Kissed Dulce de Leche Wafer Cookies, a fun yet highly memorable holiday cookie exchange entry.
When I received my first packages of cookies from my swap matches, Earl Gray White Chocolate Sandwich cookies quickly followed by Lavender Lemon Cookies, I got a serious case of stage fright. The swap requirement specified that we needed to bake something we hadn’t done before, as well as something that would travel well, and every idea I came up with just seemed too ordinary.
I wanted to make Nutella Macarons, tiny bites of nutty and chocolatey heaven, but as much as the idea made me salivate, I worried they would fall apart in the mail. So I reluctantly threw away that idea, dealing with my Nutella craving by having a steaming mug of Nutella hot chocolate before going back to the drawing board.
Things got better once I stopped thinking and started baking. Licking bowls of batter tends to make my stress disappear. I moved on to another highly craveable substance: dulce de leche. I tweaked a Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookie recipe from the gorgeous Butter Sugar Flour blog to create these Chocolate Kissed Dulce de Leche Wafer Cookies. My preschooler sous chef declared the dulce de leche batter seriously good.
You could make your own dulce de leche as it is a fun and easy project, but one maybe better suited to the long winter months and not the busy holiday season. As my December to do list is dizzying, I used Nestle La Lechera Dulce de Leche from the International aisle of my supermarket. You’ll find me there whenever I’m grocery shopping, trying to pretend I’m living in a much more exotic locale than a frozen Chicago suburb. The choice of dark chocolate to dip the cookies is key and really personal. Some recipes beg for a fruitier, more complex dark chocolate like Scharffen Berger or Callebaut, but in this case, I used a few bars of Dove Discoveries dark chocolate which has a mellower and creamier mouthfeel.
This recipe is a breeze to assemble, the hardest part is waiting for the chocolate to cool and harden. The ingredients easily yield five dozen cookies, more than you need for the typical cookie exchange. Each wafer is small enough to pop in your mouth in one bite, but packs an intense flavor combination of dark chocolate and the sweet tang of dulce de leche. With the melted chocolate still hot and dripping, I dare you to limit yourself to just one.
- 14 TBSPs of unsalted butter, softened (200 grams)
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup dulce de leche
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 2½ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 8 oz or 250 grams of dark chocolate (one typical bar will do the trick)
- 4 oz or 60 grams of white chocolate
- 4 Tablespoons of dulce de leche (listed separately because it is for the decoration)
- 2 Tablespoons of heavy cream
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two baking trays with a Silpat or wax paper and set aside.
- Beat the butter, sugars and one cup of dulce de leche until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, ensuring they are well mixed after each addition. Add the vanilla and cream until well mixed.
- Add the flour, baking powder and salt and mix until just combined.
- Drop a big teaspoonful of batter for each wafer onto the prepared tray leaving ¾ of an inch in between them.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until a deep golden brown beginning to peek on them at 8 minutes. Remove from tray and allow to cool on a wire rack.
- In a double boiler, melt the dark chocolate until smooth and shiny. Using a spatula, scrape the chocolate to one side of the double boiler to make it as deep as possible.
- Dip each wafer in the melted chocolate to cover half the wafer. Set on a plate in one layer and place in the fridge to cool and harden for an hour.
- Clean the double boiler and place the white chocolate, remaining dulce de leche, and heavy cream in the top. Melt and stir until smooth and light brown. Pour into a decorating bag or ziploc with an edge cut off, and draw pretty designs on the hard dark chocolate.
- Cool in the fridge for another 30 minutes to an hour. Your cookies are now ready and will keep for up to a week in a sealed tupperware.