Friday, February 21, 2014

Chocolate Chip Kale Cookies


I've just put kale into a cookie. I'm fairly certain I literally never thought I would say those words in a complete sentence together, but I just did. The recipe is from a super cute cookbook 50 Shades of Kale by Drew Ramsey & Jennifer Iserloh that I received for Christmas this year. The cookbook does a little spoof on the book it's obviously based on and ties up kale in S&M chains and whips. Very kitchy. But, the most exciting part is all the kale! When I saw that kale was in a cookie I was seriously hooked. I counted the days, minutes, seconds before I could eat this cookie. It seemed like years before I actually got my food processor out and chopped those kale leaves I so lovingly blanched this summer into teeny little flecks of green that my sweet little men surely wouldn't recognize as something healthy and would straightaway devour. Fortunately I was saved from eating 2 dozen Chocolate Chip Kale Cookies because everyone approved of this cookie! Even the hubs. He jokingly wondered what I would next put into a cookie as I was chopping up kidney offal for a separate project I'll be sure to tell you about soon! But, for now...back to cookies!

Do you know a super fast way to soften butter and get it ready for cookies in about 30 minutes flat? It's a little trick I learned from Ina Garten. Take your butter out of the fridge and unwrap. Using a sharp knife, cut the butter in half, then cut those pieces in half again. Now, slice crosswise into little 1/2" cubes. Those little cubes sit on the counter for 30 minutes and the butter has more surface area exposed to air and that helps the butter soften quicker. Because we want cookies now! 
The original recipe called for light brown sugar, but of course, I didn't have that and being the Queen of Let's Just Use What We Have in the Cupboard,  I used dark brown sugar. Let's just say, I don't think the cookies suffered. 
The kale I used was blanched and frozen this past summer, but the original recipe calls for fresh kale. When kale is blanched it gets smaller than fresh kale, so in theory, you would want to use less kale if you were using blanched kale. However, I didn't follow that rule. I still did a 1/2 cup of frozen kale. Make sure not to puree your kale or you're going to have a green batter and green cookies. Unless, you want green cookies, then you should puree. 
And sugar! And butter!
And sugar! And butter! And kale! Suddenly healthy. Suddenly guilt free. Suddenly you can eat 4 cookies and tell yourself you've just eaten 34 grams of fiber from all that kale.
Why are my cookies always flat? I can think of one possible answer. I didn't chill my dough. I was impatient. I needed these cookies to be baked and finished, like yesterday. So, I just plopped the warm dough onto the cookie sheet. And the dough obviously decided to flatten and become unmountain-like. I wish I could make mountain-like cookies. But I can't because I belong to the Let's Get This Done So I Can Be Finished With This Project Clean the Kitchen Now And Finish my Marie Claire Magazine Camp. I'm going to be more European from now on and be really slow about things. Have you ever dined in a European restaurant? Slow. 
Make sure not to take a bite until the cookies have cooled completely. Because if you're eating warmish Chocolate Chip Kale Cookies you're going to be tasting more kale than you might think necessary. Tell me, what crazy things have you put into a cookie?

Printable Recipe Here

Chocolate Chip Kale Cookies
recipe adapted from 50 Shades of Kale

Yield: 2 dozen

Nonstick cooking spray
1/2 cup packed torn fresh or frozen kale leaves
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon molasses
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350ºF. 

Coat a large cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. 

Place the kale leaves in the bowl of a food processor and pulse 10-15 times. Don't puree, just chop finely. 

Place butter in the bottom of a stand-up mixer and whip with the paddle attachment for about 2 minutes, until soft, white and creamy looking. Add brown sugar and whip an additional 2 minutes until incorporated, scraping down sides if necessary. Add molasses and 1 egg at a time, mixing on low, until fully incorporated. Add the vanilla extract and mix until well combined. 

Pour in the flours, oats, baking powder and sea salt. Mix until just combined. Add in chocolate chips. Chill for 30 minutes. 

Using a tablespoon measure scoop unto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until brown around the edges and looking a little doughy in the middle. Remove from oven and let rest on cookie sheet for a couple minutes. Using a spatula, move to a wire rack and cool completely before eating. Repeat with remaining dough.