It’s really easy to lose your mojo and fall victim to the routine when you have to cook for family thrice a day (at least).
I was really excited to stretch my creative muscle for this cooking challenge at Foodies Plus community to create a dish with unusual chocolate pairing.
I asked myself what makes a chocolate experience more exciting and more memorable for me. The answer came prompt – a contrasting flavour! Usually the contrasts I love with my chocolate experience (yes, I call eating anything chocolate “a chocolate experience” 😉) are fruits with a sour kick. Strawberry, pineapple, kiwi, orange and some other usual suspects came to my mind. Then I remembered the warning, nothing that has already been done to death.
So I kept thinking till tamarind came to my mind and the heart approved immediately! Why Tamarind? Because tamarind along with floral and fruity aromas has an intense roasted aroma, almost caramel like, which makes the combination of tamarind with chocolate so delicious!
The inspiration came from our South Asian style sweet and sour Tamarind Chutney. The picture began to get clearer when I started topping, mixing and blending the chutney with various drinks and desserts in my imagination.
The Tamarind Double Chocolate Cookie Sandwich idea emerged as a clear winner. The cookies were made immediately, courtesy my younger daughter, while I worked on the tamarind jam.
I kept the jam very basic. Tamarind, dates, brown sugar, salt and red chillies. A dash of red colour to make it look attractive sandwiched between two brown cookies and a little flour to get the thick, smooth, spreadable texture.
Family verdict – the cookies were gone too quickly to even photograph properly. The plates licked clean! My husband wants me to make that tamarind jam in bulk to try with more chocolate stuff.
I think it will taste great with most chocolate cakes, brownies, puddings and even pancakes. I’m going to try it next in my Chocolate And Tropical Fruit Trifle
For Double Chocolate Cookies
2 cups plain flour
1 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons milk or water
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
3/4 cup milk chocolate chips or chunks
1/2 cup cream cheese, heavy cream or butter cream frosting
For Tamarind Jam:
1/2 cup tamarind pulp
3 tablespoons brown sugar or jaggery
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red chilli flakes
1 tablespoon corn flour
A pinch red food colour
This Is What You Do:
Remove stones from dates.
Add dates, tamarind pulp, salt, brown sugar and red chilli flakes to an electric blender with 1/2 cup water. Make a smooth puree.
Add puree to a small sauce pan. Cook till the liquid begins to reduce.
Dilute corn flour and food colour in 2 tablespoons of water. Add to the puree.
Stir continuously till it thickens to a jam like consistency.
Cool to room temperature.
To make Double Chocolate Cookies, sift together your dry ingredients; flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
In a separate bowl, combine softened butter,sugar, vanilla extract and water/milk.
Combine wet and dry ingredients. Fold in chocolate chips or roughly chopped chunks.
Scoop the dough about two inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets, using a cookie or ice cream scoop. Even a heaped soup spoon would do.
Bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees C for 15 to 18 minutes.
Let cookies cool in pans for about five minutes. Then place them on a wire rack to cool completely.
To make cookie sandwich:
Place half of the cookies upside down then spread some cream cheese or heavy cream or butter cream frosting over them.
Spread a thick layer of tamarind jam over the cream/cheese layer of half of the cookies.
Cover with the remaining half to make sandwiches.
Makes 6 cookie sandwich