Skip the pot of oil and make churro cookies instead. Complete with ridges, cinnamon-sugar, and a chocolate dipping sauce.
Churros! My first (and frequent) exposure to churros actually lies with Taco Bell and their cinnamon twists. I realize they are a serious bastardization of the real deal but when Taco Bell arrives in your hometown and you experience it for the first time as a child, you take it for the truth. And those twists were the best addition to a kid’s meal I had ever seen. While I did grow up and learn that Taco Bell wasn’t real Mexican food, I do still love a cheesy gordita crunch while road tripping and I’d be lying if I said the breakfast crunch wraps weren’t the best thing to happen to fast food breakfast. Oh and those cheesy fiesta potatoes! Basically what I’m trying to say is Taco Bell, I still love you forever and always.
But my love for Taco Bell strictly lies with the cravings for Taco Bell-specific items and is not the location I seek when craving actual Mexican food (or as close as we can find it here in the US, particularly LA and San Diego). While I realize the churros I am posting today are still not the real deal, they are a fun, non-fried alternative. They are just sugar cookies shaped into rods, dipped in a cinnamon sugar, given churro-like ridges, and served with a chocolate dipping sauce (caramel/dulce de leche would be a great option too). You might think they are just snickerdoodles in a different shape, but that’s not as fun of a title.
Taco Bell should start selling these instead of their twists.
One year ago: Dill Potato Salad
Two years ago: Gluten-Free Brownie for One
Four years ago: Strawberry Fruit Dip
CHURRO COOKIES WITH CHOCOLATE DIPPING SAUCE
Makes about 4 dozen
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup superfine sugar*
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 Tbsp cream cheese, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp+2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
*Can’t find superfine sugar? Process 1 cup granulated sugar in a food processor for 30 seconds, then measure out 3/4 cup
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Using an electric mixer on medium-low speed, beat the butter into the flour mixture, one piece at a time. Continue to beat the until it looks crumbly and slightly wet, 1-2 minutes.
- Beat in the cream cheese and vanilla until the dough begins to form clumps, about 30 seconds. Knead the dough by hand a few times until it forms a ball.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into rods about 3/4-inch in diameter. Cut the rods into 3 inch pieces, place on a plate and refrigerate for 10-15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two cookie sheets with parchment or silicone baking mats. In a small bowl, combine sugar, cinnamon and salt for the coating.
- Using a pastry brush, brush each cookie with melted butter, then roll in the cinnamon sugar mixture, pressing slightly to stick. Place cookies about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets.
- Bake cookies for 10 minutes. Using a wooden skewer, immediately place indentations lengthwise along the cookies. Let cookies cool for five minutes on the cookie sheet, then place on a cooling rack to cool completely.
- While the cookies cool, prepare the sauce. Place the chocolate in a small bowl. Microwave the heavy cream for one minute then pour over the chocolate. Let stand 2 minutes, then whisk until a smooth ganache forms. Whisk in the butter until fully incorporated. Serve with cookies.