Thursday, September 6, 2012

Toffee Apple Cookies

For the last week I was racking my brains trying to think of a new secret ingredient for cookies. Every week I take a batch along to my rugby match and make the team guess what is in them, but it's not easy to have out-of-the-ordinary cookies every single week. I didn't mean for it to get so out of hand, but after the first couple of weeks they began to expect a secret ingredient, so I try to live up to their expectations as much as possible. The last couple of weeks I have been using drinks as the secret ingredient - first chai-tea cookies and then red wine chocolate cookies (both of which I haven't posted yet, I've gotten really behind!). I was going to settle for plain apple and toffee cookies this week, but then I saw the perfect recipe that would compliment my apple idea and continue on the drinks in cookies idea. It's all thanks to joining twitter (follow me maybe?) and following random bakers who also have blogs - there is an apple and chocolate cooking challenge happening this month and one of the entries was cookies with apple cider in them. I absolutely had to try it. And I'm so glad I did. I really can't tell what effect the cider syrup has in the cookies, but the cider glaze on top absolutely makes them. They are sweet, chewy, oaty cookies with a crunch that comes from the hard glaze. My glaze didn't stay as white and drizzled looking as the recipe that I was following, it sort of spread more and sunk into the cookies. But I think I like them better that way.

Toffee Apple Cookies
recipe adapted from Bakaholic Mama

350 mL apple cider
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 cup white sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 cups rolled oats
3 eating apples, cut into small cubes
1 packet chewy toffees
The glaze:
1 cup icing sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider

First of all, place the cider in a saucepan with the brown sugar and bring to the boil. Simmer it for about 20 minutes, until it is reduced down to a half cup (125 mL). Set the cider syrup aside to cool.

Meanwhile, place the butter in a microwaveable bowl or jug and place a plate on top. Microwave on high for about 4 or 5 minutes. Keep an eye on it because you don't want it to burn. First it will melt, then it will bubble a lot and make popping sounds. Then it will stop popping and bubbling and just look all frothy. When it is frothy you want to take it out of the microwave. It should be a dark yellow colour, sort of golden but not yet brown. As it cools it will turn a toasty brown and smell sort of nutty.This is, of course, brown butter. If it smells bitter and is dark brown or black, it is burnt and no good and you will have to try again.

When the butter has cooled somewhat, whisk in the sugar. Then combine, in a large bowl, the butter/sugar mixture, the cider syrup, the egg and the vanilla. Beat together well.

Add the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Mix well and then add the oats and apple.

Carefully cut the toffees into quarters, then add them to the rest of the mixture. Use your hands to combine it all really well and then place in the fridge for an hour (this is important, somehow it helps them to spread nicely, and become a proper cookie shape).

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius and prepare a couple of cookie trays. Roll the mixture into balls (it is easier with wet hands) and press onto the cookie trays, allowing a bit of room to spread. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until they are golden, then let them cool on the trays until they are firm.

To make a glaze for drizzling over the cookies, combine the icing sugar with the cider. Stir to a paste and then pipe or drizzle over the cold cookies.

As an afterthought to this recipe, I think it would be a good idea to make it in a tray and cut into slices. This would be largely due to my adaptation of the original and the addition of the toffees - they melted into puddles, leaving holes in my cookies and a big sticky mess:

The cookies were good, but if the whole the had been contained in a tray I think the result would have been a little more aesthetically pleasing. So, next time.

PS - just a little update - a week later and the rugby team are still raving about these. This time they really do think they are the best ones yet. There must be something special about this, I will definitely have to make them again sometime soon.


  1. Hi, Jamie, these look delicious. They just SCREAM Fall. Can't wait to get to the apple orchards, this will be a recipe I'll try!

  2. This is a unique recipe to me. The flavors seem like the would be the perfect blend. I agree with Karen, a great Fall cookie.

  3. I am inviting you to come and share this in my Show Your Stuff blog hop:


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