Some how I stumbled upon the Bin 27 Cookie Rumble (http://doriegreenspan.com/2013/10/bin-27-cookie-rumble-create-a-cookie-to-go-with-port-win-big.html) and I knew I had to give it a shot.
Better yet, I knew what cookie recipe I wanted to contribute. These Forest Cookies are one of my favorite original cookie recipes. I make them all the time for friends and family and they are always accepted along with a glass of milk.
Here is the recipe I entered in the competition:
Contributed by: Aviv Harkov
This cookie recipe was inspired by too many hours spent watching Top Chef. It never occurred to me that something like basil belonged in my dessert. In my mind, most herbs belonged with proteins and main courses. It took me a while, but I finally collected the courage, to give basil desserts a shot; and boy am I glad I did.
The addition of fresh basil gives these cookies a bit more depth and allows them to be more than an old chocolate chip cookie; but just as easy to make.
I don’t really know why I call these cookies Forest Cookies.
Maybe it’s the collection of colors or the hint of green basil in every bite.
The name clearly came from my stomach and not my mind, which realizes that not a single ingredient actually comes from a forest. It doesn’t matter because any time I hear the word forest; I think of these cookies and start to smile. I can’t tell you how many cups of tea or laughs we served along with these cookies. Fresh out of the oven, they’re the perfect thing to keep you warm all winter long.
The mix of the whole wheat flour’s nuttiness, the sweet basil, and sour craisins, with a touch of the white chocolate’s smooth taste, give this cookie a unique flavor. Whenever I serve Forest Cookies to someone for the first time, I get asked what’s in them; and the only answer I have is: a smile.
In all honesty, that’s probably the most straight forward answer I can give to what makes a Forest Cookie. It’s not the forest, it’s not a list of ingredients, but the good times that come with every bite.
Serves: about 2 1/2 dozen cookies
1 cup walnuts (chopped)
1 cup of unsalted butter (at room temperature)
2 Tbsp basil (chopped)
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1/ 2 cup of sugar
1 large egg (at room temperature)
2 Tbsp buttermilk (at room temperature)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup of whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup of white chocolate chips
1 cup of craisins
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Crush your walnuts and place them on a baking sheet.
- Roast your walnuts until they become fragrant. This should take a few minutes.
- Set aside your walnuts for later use and cover your baking sheet with wax paper.
- Beat your butter, sugars and basil together in a large bowl.
- Mix your egg, buttermilk, and vanilla extract until they are just combined.
I recommend using a rubber spatula to remove the parts of the batter that will stick to your bowl’s sides.
- In a medium bowl combine your flours, baking soda and salt.
- Combine your flour mixture into the bowl with the rest of your batter.
- Gently combine your walnuts, white chocolate, and craisins into the batter so that they are evenly distributed around the batter.
- Place tablespoons of batter, a couple of inches apart from each other, across your baking sheets.
- Bake your Forest Cookies for 12-14 minutes.
- They should still be soft but not gooey when they are ready.
- Let them rest on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes before removing them and serving.
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