By Mia McTigue-Rodriguez
I’ve been Marie Kondo-ing the unloved condiments. Experimenting and using up all kinds of abandoned jars in the fridge. Lemon curd has found its way into smoothies and pesto has been swirled through hopeful clouds of proving dough, which miraculously, impossibly, became bread. Mostly edible bread, too! Things have gone wrong. Very wrong. But when things fail, we make breadcrumbs. We make frowning faces. We make tea, and lift packets of hobnobs to the air like Simba, and we forget that anything went wrong at all.
Things have sometimes, however, surprised us. Tahini, for example. Expensive bastard. Sesame paste swiftly forgotten about after a brief love affair with Persian cooking. But - once stirred into a fail-proof cookie dough, the love was instantly rekindled. These are salty, chocolatey and addictive. As good cookies should be. The best thing about them is that it is quite difficult to mess up.
Keep the oven on low and try not to fall asleep, and it’s unlikely you’ll forget about them and end up with charcoal. I promise. You might even end up undercooking them and find yourself with a bowlful of hot cookie dough pudding to have with ice cream. Things go wonderfully wrong sometimes, and baking proves this, time and time again.
This recipe is best doubled, so you can roll some of the cookie dough into balls and keep them in the freezer for emergencies. Which, all things considered, most days seem to be at the moment. If you do this, whack the oven on 200 degrees and cook the batch from frozen for 15-17 minutes.
You will need:
160g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
A smidge of vanilla (beans or extract)
300 grams chocolate (a mixture of whatever you can get your hands on! Triple, quadruple - more is always more)
Four large tablespoons of tahini (or substitute with peanut butter)
1 egg yolk (I think this makes them chewier)
100 grams caster sugar
60 grams brown sugar (soft is best here)
120 grams unsalted butter (room temp)
A teaspoon (or more) of flaky sea salt
You can leave out the tahini and add whatever you have to hand. I recommend:
A splash of cooled coffee
Cranberries and white chocolate
Raisins and oats (breakfast!)
Nuts, pretzels, fudge or cinnamon...
Right then. Oven on 180C, please.
Whisk your butter with the sugars and the tahini for 5 minutes. Ages, I know. Your arm is going to ache. It will be completely worth it. See if you can juggle at the same time, or de-cork a wine bottle. Multitask, baby!
Add the egg (and extra yolk) and half of the flour (keep the whites in the fridge for optimistic omelettes or mini meringues). Whisk until combined. Add vanilla, baking powder, and the other half of the flour and mix again briefly.
Add all the chocolate! Line your baking tray with baking paper or your ‘baking armour’ of choice… Scoop heaped tablespoons of the mixture onto the tray, keeping them spread out as these grow pretty big.
Bake ‘em for 13-15 mins max, then take them out and sprinkle with sea salt. You’re best off leaving them be at this point for at least 10 minutes. They will continue to cook and harden a little more. The chocolate will still be perfectly melty, don’t worry! Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.
We had to make these. Watch us make these delicious cookies and dance around our kitchen to ABBA!