Did anyone actually get freshly baked cookies as an afterschool snack? Or is this a mom cliché, a trope that’s been trotted out for one too many cookie dough commercials? Whatever the origins, one thing we know: baking cookies now corresponds with caring. The act is almost mythological: measuring the flour, sliding the tray into the oven, swiping cookie dough off the spatula for a taste. We’ve all seen these moments.
But we’ve seen more than we’ve tasted. Time to cook is harder to come by in our modern world, and should we find it, we’re more likely to make dinner than bake a batch of cookies. These chocolate crinkle cookies—dark and rich with a faint, fruity tang from the olive oil—may change your mind. Time, or the lack of it, led me to them. A sudden need to contribute dessert to an impromptu dinner party sent me Googling the contents of my pantry and stirring up cookies for the first time in years.
They bake up chewy and crinkly and very chocolate-y. The sea salt and olive oil made them special enough to whip up that night, but these sweet treats are delicious enough to make again for someone I love just because. Maybe that’s where the myth was born: a treat this good and portable compels you to share. Whether the sharing happens after school with a tall glass of milk for your third-grader, or at 11 at night in sweatpants with your significant other is insignificant. It’s the baking—and the breaking together—that makes them sweet.
CHOCOLATE CRINKLE COOKIES
Yield: about 2 dozen
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 Tbs. hot water
1/2 tsp. sea salt
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
Flaky finishing salt
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Using a large bowl and a hand mixer, beat the olive oil and sugar until well mixed. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating in between the addition of each egg. The mixture should become creamy.
2. Dissolve the baking soda in the hot water and set aside.
3. Add the cocoa powder, flour, and salt. Beat until dough forms.
4. Mix in the dissolved baking soda, and then mix in the chocolate chips.
5. Scoop the dough by heaping tablespoons onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, making sure to leave an inch or so between each cookie. Generously sprinkle with flaky finishing salt.
6. Bake at 350°F for 12 minutes. The cookies will not look done, but edges should be set. Remove from oven and let cool completely (very important!) on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack.