I'm not a fan of sugar coating. By that, I mean I don't like caramel apples and I like to know the truth about things -- plain and simple. I appreciate honesty and directness. For example, no one ever tells you how hard it's going to be when you become a parent. Now that I have a two year old, I don't like to "sugar coat" things around expectant parents. Yes, you're going to have a gorgeous, bouncing baby that coos at you and parenting is the most beautiful experience a person can have. But guess what? At times, it will also make the toughest thing you've ever done in your life before parenthood seem ridiculously easy.
On the other hand, I do like things to be chocolate coated. Unlike sugar, which is just sweet for the sake of being sweet, chocolate is complex. More like real life. It can be bitter on top of being sweet. At times it can be a little salty, or overpowering. Just like the real emotions we experience every day.
In the age of "self branding," people have a tendancy to sugar coat their lives. Everyone is beautiful, no one gets sick, argues, loses their patience or struggles. It doesn't do justice to what we all really deal with in everyday life. Things taste better when they've got some depth and character, don't you think? So let's skip the sugar coating and go for the 85% dark, organic, single origin chocolate.
Chocolate Covered Log Cookies
The Magnolia Bakery Cookbook
A soft, orange scented cookie, topped with rich, intense chocolate and rolled in festive chopped pistachios.
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest (zest from 1/2 a large orange)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted
1 cup finely chopped pecans (you could also use walnuts, pecans or toasted hazelnuts)
Preheat the oven to 350.
In a large bowl, cream the butter until smooth, about 3 minutes.
Gradually beat in the sugar and cream until fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the orange zest and the vanilla extract until well combined. Gradually add the flour until blended (dough will be a little crumbly).
Make a ball with the dough, flatten it, wrap it in plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour or over night.
Remove dough from refrigerator and let soften for 5-10 minutes. Taking small pieces of the dough, roll them into balls and then 3-inch logs. Place logs onto un-greased cookie sheets, leaving several inches between cookies for expansion. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden. Cool the cookies on sheets for 1 minute, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate. When cookies have cooled for about 15 minutes, dip them halfway in the chocolate, then roll in chopped nuts. Allow them to set for 15 minutes before serving.