chocolate cardamom cookies
One of the very first times I met Sarah, it was at a local blogger brunch at Melissa‘s house. Sarah brought danishes from her then forthcoming cookbook, The Vanilla Bean Baking Book. They looked perfect. They tasted perfect. It was at that moment that I knew, instantly, Sarah and I are kindred baking spirits and I couldn’t wait to get my oven mitts on her book.
Fast-forward nearly a year and a half later and here we are — the book is here in my hand, the oven is on and I am finding myself once again drooling over those amazing danishes on page 65. But also over the Lemon Bread on page 96. And the Blood Orange No-Churn Ice Cream on page 283. But of course, also, over these chocolate cardamom cookies, which can be found on page 246, on my kitchen counter and in my belly.
The Vanilla Bean Baking Book reads like a warm hug from an old friend. It’s the kind of book you keep on your shelf for generations — the one that grandkids and great-grandkids will thumb through when they come to visit, pages splattered over decades with butter and cocoa powder, the spine cracked and worn, begging with big eyes for that lemon bread. Or maybe it will be those danishes, filled in the centers with cream cheese or apricot jam. Or maybe it will be these chocolate cardamom cookies, with their crackled tops, crispy edges and chewy centers, oversized and full of rich, bittersweet chocolate flavor. In any case, I wouldn’t be surprised if one of my “legendary” baking recipes, the kind that get passed down through the family all well-worn and loved, comes straight from Sarah’s book. It’s got that potential.
This recipe in Sarah’s book is actually for chocolate sugar cookies and the cardamom addition is a suggested variation, and I thought it perfect for the holiday season. I gave a few of these away to Avery’s teachers (bless them for taking care of our small children on snowy days and rainy days and pretty much any day that ends in Y) and the rest went straight into our bellies. My husband and I agree these are some of the best cookies we’ve ever had, ever. Ever. And I’ve had a lot of cookies in my day. Suffice it to say, it won’t be long before another batch of these cookies ends up on my kitchen counter — likely along with those danishes. I just can’t wait.
Don’t forget to order yourself (or someone you love!) a copy of The Vanilla Bean Baking Book, and get excited for cookies in your near future.Print
Chocolate Cardamom Cookies
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 11 mins
- Total Time: 31 mins
- Yield: 11 to 12 large cookies 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
- 1 3/4 cups (249 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (50 g) natural cocoa powder or a combination cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (227 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 3/4 cups (347 g) sugar, plus 1 cup (198 g) for rolling
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
- Adjust an oven rack to the middle position. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the butter on medium until smooth. Add the 1 3/4 cups sugar and beat on medium until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat on medium until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat on low until just combined.
- Place the remaining 1 cup sugar in a medium bowl. Stir in cardamom, if desired.
- Form the cookies into 3-ounce (85 g) balls (a scant 1/3 cup each). Roll each ball in the sugar and place 6 cookies on each prepared sheet pan. Bake one sheet at a time 11 to 14 minutes, until the edges have set and the centers are puffed and starting to crackle.
- Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the cookies cool completely on the pan.
Keywords: Christmas recipe, Christmas, Holidays
These look incredible! I need to get this book asap!
Love the addition of cardamom! I need to get my hands on this cookbook!
take that optional right off the cardamom! 🙂 love that spice so much and just made my own cardamom cookies this week actually. these look amazing! Congrats sarah!!
Would these cookies still work if made in a smaller size (i.e. in 1.5T balls instead of 1/3 cup balls)?
I bet the cardamom tastes delicious with chocolate! These cookies sound perfect for Christmas – or really any chilly winter day.
Eclaire — It might affect their texture but you certainly can make them smaller — just be sure to bake them for less time.
These look extraordinary! Love the enhancement of cardamom! I need to obtain my hands on this recipe book!
I made these tonight and they are a yummy brownie-like texture. I would have added the cardamom to the batter because it was not detectable only in the sugar. Also, one cup of sugar for rolling is too much. I made them smaller and still baked them for 15-17 minutes. I would make them again with the changes
These are amazing! Not only are they the perfect combination of crispy-outside/soft, chewy inside, but the cardamom sugar is a revelation! To be honest, I don’t notice the flavour too much on the outside of the cookies, but I have been using the leftover rolling sugar (there was a lot of extra, but I didn’t mind once I found other uses for it) in my morning black tea, and it makes it taste like a chai. I also used some in a cranberry relish recipe in place of just plain sugar. YUM!
Is the weight for the flour correct? This weighty corresponds to just over two cups of flour.
What about using coconut or almond flour? I am trying to remove all-purpose flour and find better alternatives.
Could I forgo the rolling in sugar and flatten this as one big cookie cake? Any suggestions on that? I want to make one shaped as a Christmas tree and ice with an orange icing.
Thanks for the feed back!
Hi Kaylah, I can’t give you any solid advice on this because I’ve never baked it as one big cookie cake before, but I LOVE that idea! I say give it a try (and note the baking time will be different). If you do make it, please let me know! 🙂
Just finished making these… thank you for the best cookie (recipe) ever!!!! These are so easy but look like you took hours… the cardamom touch is excellent….
Thank you so much, Laraine! So glad you liked them!
Chocolate and cardamom are glorious. I came across this recipe after a failed attempt at orange bars with chocolate cardamom crust. The filling was a fail, but I couldn’t forget the crust. So this recipe was just what I was looking for! I put 1 tsp cardamom IN the dough (like I’d done in my own tart dough) and 1/2 tsp in the rolling sugar. And made them 1/2 the size (kid friendly). Definitely saving the extra rolling sugar…I’ll find something…or make more!
Where have these been all my life???
Maggiebakes, Thank you so so much! Love the kid size idea, too. 😉
Tried this recipe today and the cookies turned out great. I have never used cardamom before so this was a new experience! I added the cardamom and some orange zest to my batter and made the size smaller 32g each. I baked them for 10 Minutes. By reducing the size of the cookies this recipe made 28 cookies 3” in diameter.