This is a cookery book I have had in my bookcase for a few years now. The Popina Book of Baking, by Isidora Popovic, published by Ryland, Peters & Small. I think I picked it up in Waitrose one day when I was grocery shopping, having immediately fallen in love with the looks of that tart on the cover.
Popina started out in 2000 with a grant from the Prince's Trust and a stall in London's Portobello Market. Their delicious goodies now grace the shelves of many, many gourmet food shops. They specialize in hand-made, organic, additive free sweet and savoury baked goodies, using the finest seasonal ingredients. I've never had the opportunity to taste any of their products . . . but this book, I guess is a way of being able to savour some of their delights in your own home kitchen.
Today I baked the Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe from the book. I didn't change anything from it. I only ever very rarely do the first time I bake something as I want to see what the recipe artist intended first off . . . before I grab the ball and run with it. (I know . . . for someone who is trying to lose weight, I'm very, very naughty to say the least . . . )
These are big cookies and they look really puffy . . . but they are amazingly crisp. The picture in the book showed really flat cookies. Mine were not flat, so I don't know . . . no matter . . . they are delicious anyways.
I didn't get any molten chocolate . . . probably because I used chocolate chips . . . if I had used real chocolate I would have had oodles of molten chocolate goo, which probably in the wrong hands could be rather dangerous . . . a minute on the lips and all that . . .
If you are looking for a lovely fat, crisp chocolate chip cookie filled with lots of milk and dark chocolate goodness, this is the cookie for you.
I think when I make them another time I will add some sultanas or dried cherries. I like a bit of fruit in my chocolate chip cookies . . .
And perhaps some chopped toasted pecans. Those would be a really delicious addition . . . although having said that they are pretty yummy without any additions . . . truly. With a glass of cold milk . . . ummm . . . deeply satisfying, fresh out of the oven.
I can't believe it took me two years to bake something out of this book . . . I think I'm going to try the Cherry Chocolate Truffle Brownies next . . . do you think I should??? Dare I????
Ohhh . . . might be deliciously temptingly dangerous, don't you think??? (Other tasty offerings include such delicious treats as Cheshire Cheese and Apple Straws, Pepper, Pecorino and Thyme Tartlets, Wholemeal Spelt, Carrot, Apple and Pumpkin Seed Muffins and that tasty tart on the cover??? It's a Nectarine and Summer Berry Tart!)
*Popina Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookies*
Makes 12 large cookies
You can use regular chocolate chips, or cut up your own chocolate for these. Any way you do it, they are fabulous. Eat the cookies warm for some molten chocolate scrummieness!! From the Popino Book of Baking. Plan ahead as the dough needs to chill in the refrigerator before baking.
120g unsalted butter at room temperature (generous half cup, about 4 1/4 ounces)
165g of soft light brown sugar (8/10 cup packed, or scant 14 TBS packed)
1 TBS golden syrup (can use golden corn syrup)
few drops vanilla
1 large free range egg
210g of plain flour (Generous 2 cups)
1/2 tsp baking powder
60g each dark and milk chocolate, chopped (1/3 cup each, or use chocolate chips)
Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the syrup, vanilla and egg, beating it in well. Sift together the flour and baking powder. Stir this into the wet ingredients, mixing in well. Stir in the chopped chocolate. Shape the dough into a roll, 2 inches in diameter. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 170*C/325*F/ gas mark 3. Line several baking sheets with baking paper. Set aside.
Remove the dough from the fridge and unwrap. Cut into 12 equal slices. Arrange the cookie dough discs onto the prepared baking trays, leaving plenty of space in between for spreading.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the cookies are pale golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for several minutes. Serve warm for a real taste treat. Store in an airtight container for up to one week.
In The Cottage today, a delicious Blackberry Cobbler.
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