Last December, I had the privilege of attending the book luncheon event with Dorie Greenspan at Melissa’s Produce, where Dorie presented her new cookbook, Dorie’s Cookies. At the event, we got to sample a galore of sweet and savory cookies that Melissa’s Produce chefs baked from the book.
Meeting Dorie was special. Besides being charming and very down to earth, Dorie is a baking guru with a wealth of knowledge she was enthusiastic to share in her presentation. I’ve always been drawn to Dorie’s recipe writing style. It is as if she is watching you as you bake or cook and tells you what could go wrong and how to fix the issue, or what you should expect next and why. The same with Dorie’s new book. It is filled with super baker-friendly, detailed recipes for cookies fit for any occasion.
At home, I ended up marking almost every recipe to try, but I was most attracted to savory cookies (I prefer savory over sweet), aplenty in Dorie’s book.
My very first choice fell on goat cheese and chive cookies, because I happen to absolutely love goat cheese! By itself or in anything. I find the distinct, deep, and rather intense flavor of the cheese with its creamy texture simply irresistible.
Too bad I waited until a few days ago to make the cookies. They were so good – tender, with a very mellow taste of the cheese, and a tad of freshness from the chives. I confess to have shamelessly gobbled up most of them. I treated the remaining cookies to the kids not expecting “oh-so-good”s because they usually frown at savory bakes. But I was wrong. They wholeheartedly approved of them from first bite, asking why I didn’t make a big batch (schhh, I ate most of it, remember?).
A note on the recipe. Dorie suggests rolling out the dough and cutting it into circles using a small cookie cutter. Instead of circles, I made tiny hearts from half of the dough. I also used a different technique for making cookie circles from the remaining dough – I shaped it into a log, chilled it, then sliced into perfect rounds. Super easy and no scraps to gather like in the first method.
Made up your mind about the shape? Then let’s get baking! For the Valentines Day, hearts seem to be more fitting. Those delicious, tiny hearts of goat cheese and chive are sure to melt anyone’s heart. But honestly, I wouldn’t mind round cookies either. Enjoy!
This is how the dough looks, speckled with green bits of fresh chives.
Heart-shaped goat cheese and chive cookies are ready to bake!
Slicing the chilled dough into small circles is a great alternative to cutting out shapes from the rolled out dough.
Baked into golden hearts!
Pretty all the way! Plus, extremely addictive!
- 1 stick (8 tablespoons; 4 ounces; 113 grams) unsalted butter, cut into chunks, at room temperature
- 3 ounces (1/3 cup packed; 85 grams) soft fresh goat cheese
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives (can substitute scallion greens)
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1¼ cups (170 grams) all-purpose flour
- Make the Dough: Working with a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter, cheese, salt, pepper and chives together on medium-low speed until light and well blended, about 2 minutes.
- Add the egg and honey and beat for 2 minutes. Turn off the mixer, add the flour at once and pulse to start incorporating it. Then mix on low speed only until the flour disappears and the dough comes together. If you have some dry ingredients on the bottom of the bowl, stir them in with a flexible spatula. Next, shape the dough into a disk (for cut-out cookie shapes) or sausage (for sliced cookie rounds), using one of the methods below. Method 1: Turn the dough onto a work surface, gather it together and press it into a disk. Place the disk between pieces of parchment paper and roll ¼ inch thick. Keeping the dough between the paper, slide it onto a baking sheet and freeze for at least 1 hour. If your baking sheet is too large to fit in the freezer, carefully transfer the parchment paper onto a flat surface on the freezer. Method 2: Divide the dough in half and with your hand, shape each half into a sausage ¼ inch in diameter. Roll each sausage around parchment paper and freeze for 1 hour.
- Prepare to Bake the Cookies: Center a rack in the oven and preheat it to 350ºF (180ºC). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- Shape the Cookies: For heart-shaped cookies: Have a small hart-shaped cookie cutter (about 1¼-inch-diameter) at hand. You can use any other shape or a circle (although slicing the circles is easier, to save time). Peel away the parchment paper from the top of the dough. Cut out as many cookies as you can and place them on the lined baking sheet, leaving at least an inch between them. (If the dough gets too soft as you're cutting, stop and put it and the already cut cookies in the freezer to firm briefly.) Gather the scraps together, flatten them into a disk, re-roll ¼ inch thick and freeze. For sliced round cookies: Unwrap one dough sausages and, using a sharp knife, slice into circles at 1¼ inch intervals. Place on the linked baking sheet, leaving at least an inch between them.
- Bake the Cookies: Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the cookies are browned on the bottom, lightly golden and firm to the touch on top. As the cookies bake, you'll see butter bubbling around the tops and edges – it will settle into the cookies as they cool. Transfer the baking sheet to a rack and allow the cookies to rest for at least 5 minutes before serving, or let them cool completely. Cut and bake the scraps or sliced rounds, making sure the baking sheet is cool (or, use another baking sheet). The cookies can be stored for up to 3 days in a covered container.