We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Cookie Recipe #29 - Chocolate-Filled Ravioli Cookies

This is not pasta, only in the shape of ravioli-no marinara sauce involved! The outside is almost a shortbread with a touch of honey then when you get to the inside your mouth fills with chocolate and walnuts. A terrific combination! I've never made these before, but will make them again in the future. It's a little bit of work, but well worth the effort!

Ingredients: 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup shortening, 1/4 cup butter, softened, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips, 3/4 cup chopped walnuts, honey, 1/2 cup additional chopped walnuts.

Instructions: Mix sugar, shortening, butter, eggs and vanilla in medium mixing bowl. Stir in sifted flour, baking soda and salt; mix well. Divide dough into 4 bowls; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 hours. (May be done the night before).

Place chocolate chips and walnuts in food processor and process about 30 seconds, or until mixture begins to hold together. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Remove one bowl of dough from refrigerator and place dough on a floured surface. With floured rolling pin, roll dough into rectangle, 12x8 inches. Cut dough into 12 rectangles, each 3x2 inches. Place 1 teaspoon of packed chocolate/walnut mixture on one end of each rectangle. Using metal spatula or knife dipped in flour, carefully fold dough over filling. Pinch edges to seal with your fingers. Press edges with a fork dipped in flour. Using the spatula or knife, carefully lift cookie and place on ungreased baking sheet about 1 inch apart. Bake 7-9 minutes or until cookies are light brown.

Remove pan from oven and brush tops of cookies with honey, then sprinkle with reserved chopped walnuts. Allow to cool 2 minutes, then transfer to cooling racks.

Makes about 4 dozen raviolis. Can be cut into larger squares and add an extra amount of filling to each cookie.

I found this recipe in my Betty Crocker Cookbook - 40th Anniversary Edition that I had received as a Christmas gift in 1992. Why I never made these before baffles me...

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