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Chocolate Hermits


Source: Happiness is Baking (Little, Brown & Company, 2019 ed.), pg. 134 and
Maida Heatter's Cookies (Andrews & McMeel Publishing, 1997 ed.), pg. 19.

How have I went this long baking Maida's recipes without making the Chocolate Hermits? These cookies are the bomb! Seriously, we can't stay out of them. 

Hermits are old-fashioned cookies that has been around since the 1800s. How they got their name is a mystery. I don't know why I thought the cookies would be hard. They are not but in fact super soft with an intense chocolate flavor with a delicious hint of cinnamon. They remind me somewhat of the Snackwell's Devil's Food cookies. They almost melt in your mouth. 

This is definitely one my new favorite cookie recipes!

3 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1 1/4 sifted all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 TBS. unsweetened cocoa powder (preferably Dutch-process)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. instant espresso or coffee powder
4 oz. unsalted butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1 cup raisins
1 cup walnut or pecan pieces

Glaze

1/4 cup sifted confectioners sugar
1 TBS. unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 TBS. milk or light cream
Pinch of salt 

Preheat the oven to 350. Line two cookie sheets with parchment or foil.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler over barely simmering water.



Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, cocoa, cinnamon and coffee.



Cream the butter and add the vanilla extract and sugar, beating well. 

Add the egg and the melted chocolate.



Add the milk.



Add the sifted flour mixture, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.



Add the raisins and the nuts.




Scoop the batter out in a rounded tablespoon and place them on the cookie sheets about an inch apart.



Bake 18-20 minutes or until the cookies are firm and bounce back slightly when lightly pressed. Do not overbake.

While the cookies are baking, prepare the glaze.

Stir all the glaze ingredients (confectioners sugar, butter, vanilla and milk) until it is smooth. It should have a slightly runny consistency. You can adjust it by adding more milk (if too thick) or sugar (if too thin). In my experience, I had to add a bit more milk.



When the cookies come out of the oven, place a dollop of the glaze on each cookie. (I wasn't too happy with the way the glaze looked on mine so I will try and be more careful when I make them again).

After the glaze has dried, the cookies can be stored in an airtight container. Use wax paper to separate layers.






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