Scharffen Berger, one of my favorite chocolate companies, hosts an annual recipe contest. The theme of this year’s contest is the sandwich cookie. Recipe entries must include some form of Scharffen Berger chocolate and at least one of the ingredients they have designated as “Adventure Ingredients”. I have never entered the contest before but I thought it would be a fun challenge. After quite a bit of deliberation I chose sweet potato and coconut milk as my special ingredients. Inspired by alfajores, I decided to make a sandwich cookie with dulce de leche as a filling.
I modified a chocolate wafer cookie recipe found here by adding cooked sweet potato and increasing the flour to compensate for the additional moisture. The result was a dense dark chocolate cookie with a hint of sweet potato flavor. Although I like the cookies, I’m not sure I would make them again with the sweet potato. It didn’t add anything special enough to justify its addition.
The original recipe I tried for the coconut dulce de leche did not turn out the way I had hoped. I think I would have had better results if I had used a heavier saucepan. Ideally, candy making should be done in a heavy, thick saucepan to ensure even heat distribution. I used one of my regular pans and ended up with scorched dulce de leche . After looking at a few recipe variations on the web, I came up with my own that yielded better results. The baking soda is added to increase the pH of the milk mixture. This facilitates the Maillard reaction which allows browning to occur at a lower temperature. In addition to being used as a cookie filling, the dulce de leche would also be delicious as an ice cream topping. I am thinking of adding toasted coconut flakes and drizzling some over vanilla ice cream.
Dark Chocolate Sweet Potato Wafer Cookies with Coconut Dulce de Leche
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, well packed
- 1/2 cup cooked sweet potato
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 milk
- Using a mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, brown sugar, sweet potato and vanilla.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Sift if there are any lumps.
- Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix by hand to combine. Add the milk and mix.
- Form the dough into two 1 1/2 inch rolls. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Slice chilled cookie dough into 1/8 inch thick slices.
- Place slices on parchment lined baking sheets 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake for 10 minutes.
- Let cookies sit on baking sheets for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove and place on wire rack to finish cooling.
- To assemble cookie sandwiches, spread the dulce de leche between two cookies.
Coconut Dulce de Leche Ingredients
- 2 13.5 ounce cans of coconut milk
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- Whisk together coconut milk, sugar and salt in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Bring to a simmer, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Add baking soda and stir to combine.
- Reduce heat to low and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour until the mixture has thickened.
- Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.