When Sugar and Crumbs asked for blogger volunteers to test their new natural flavoured chocolate icing sugars, I jumped at the chance. This article about their first year in business from the Guardian is really interesting. Being a small newcomer in the huge home baking market, they couldn’t afford to formally advertise but instead have been making relationships with bloggers and sending us products to play around with and if they like them, blog about. You’ll find a lot of reviews out there with a quick Google to see what I’m talking about. I’ve been following them on Facebook for some time and only indecision over which of their fantastic looking products I should try first held me back from ordering myself! They sent me two flavours to play with and the first one is Chocolate Milkshake.
The immediate temptation is to use these icing sugars to make a standard buttercream to frost cakes and cupcakes with. I wanted to think outside the box just a little and see how it stood up to baking into a cookie. This flavour in particular smells very strongly of cocoa and milky vanilla when opening the bright pink, self-sealing pouch (with very long use by dates on, might I add). Being icing sugar, the fine texture means it dissolves quickly when creaming with butter and the resulting cookie is meltingly tender. Think of melting moment cookies – the sort which almost dissolve in your mouth. When I think of milkshake, no matter what the main flavour, vanilla features in my taste memory and chunks of white chocolate were my weapon of choice to bring a sweet, baby soft cookie which cries out for a glass of milk to drink with whilst eating. My first bite took me back to my first year of primary school, eating biscuits and a miniature bottle of milk with a thin blue plastic straw at break time. I can’t imagine many schools feed their children biscuits at break time nowadays but it was the 80s. A simpler time.
All in all, I’m impressed with the concept of these flavoured chocolate icing sugars (you will find plenty of other flavours without choccie in their online shop). These cookies were lovely to eat – not one ounce of chew if you are chewy-cookie phobic, I know there are folk with an aversion to such delights! The flavour of the chocolate was subtle and mild – reminiscent of milk chocolate really. I am quite sure it would appeal to children and those who find dark chocolate too powerful. The astute amongst you will notice a second pink package of loveliness shyly hiding behind the chocolate milkshake one in the photos. Now I am very excited to be trying out that second flavour which will remain a surprise until my next post. Don’t worry – I was never very good at keeping secrets so it won’t be long before I reveal what it is. Those of you who love a little delicate something to eat with a cup of tea, curled up on your favourite chair with a favourite book to get lost in won’t want to miss it… 😉
- 100g soft butter
- 100g chocolate milkshake icing sugar*
- 1 small egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 125g plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 100g white chocolate, chopped or use chips
- *=if you can’t get Sugar & Crumbs flavoured icing sugars, I recommend using 100g icing sugar with 1 tbsp of cocoa powder instead and maybe up the vanilla extract to 1 tsp.
- Cream the butter and flavoured icing sugar together then beat in the egg and vanilla
- Sift over the flour and baking powder then beat in gently, stirring in the chocolate chunks or chips towards the end
- Using two spoons, dollop out rounded tbsps of cookie dough onto a lined baking sheet. It will be very soft due to the icing sugar. You MUST chill the unbaked dough thoroughly before baking to avoid the cookies spreading far too much on baking. Try to make the mounds of dough taller than they are wide and chill for at least an hour (over night is even better) or freeze for 30 minutes. (I use a small tray lined with waxed paper which fits in my tiny freezer – just transfer the semi-frozen dough to a lined baking tray before baking.)
- Bake for 9-10 mintues in an oven preheated to 180°C in the centre of the oven. They will spread a little and will be puffy and soft in the centre but dry to the touch at the edges when they are ready.
- Cool on the tray, on a rack for a few minutes and when firmed up a little, transfer with a spatula directly to the rack to finish cooling (cooling on the baking tin may lead to them cooking too much and giving you crispy bottoms).