Best served as an appetizer or snack, these delicate cookies shine their brightest when paired with an equally salty olive-infused hummus on the side. Don’t be afraid to really drive the theme home with a robust tapenade. An intense dark chocolate can stand up to anything you throw at it. The saying really is true; chocolate goes with everything, or perhaps more accurately, everything goes with chocolate.
- 1/2 Cup Non-Dairy Margarine
- 1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
- 2 Tablespoons Cornstarch
- 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Tarragon
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 Cup Oil-Cured Olives, Pitted and Chopped
- 2.5 Ounces 90% Cacao Dark Chocolate, Chopped
- 2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1. Fit your stand mixer with the paddle attachment and thoroughly cream together the margarine and sugar, until the mixture is homogenous. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, tarragon, pepper, and salt, making sure that all of the dry goods are evenly distributed throughout. Add in the chopped olives and chocolate, tossing gently to coat all of the pieces with flour. Break up any clumps of olives that may remain sticking together so that they’re equally blended throughout each finished cookie. Starting the mixer back up on the lowest setting, slowly incorporate the dry goods in two additions, alternating with the olive oil, until all the remaining ingredients are used.
2. The dough should be just moist enough to stick together in a coherent ball when pressed; don’t be tempted to incorporate extra liquid! Gather it all up and form it into a log about 6 – 8 inches long. You can choose to either keep your cookies rounded or square off the edges by gently dropping the log on the counter at regular intervals. It’s merely a stylistic choice, so feel free to play around with it. Once shaped as desired, wrap the dough log in plastic and place it in your freezer. Allow at least 2 hours for it to chill, or store for up to 3 months before baking.
3. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees and line two baking sheets with silpats or pieces of parchment paper.
4. Unwrap the chilled dough, handling it as little as possible to prevent it from warming up, and use a very sharp knife to cut it into slices approximately 1/4 inch in thickness. (The cookies pictured above are admittedly a bit too thick- Don’t go too chunky here or they will be very dry and cloying!) Lay the cookies out with about 1/2 inch in between them on your prepared sheets, and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through, until lightly golden brown.
5. Let it cool completely on the sheets before enjoying or storing in an air-tight container.
Makes 1 1/2 – 2 Dozen Cookies