Monday, September 8, 2008

TWD: Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops

Dorie's Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops

An occupational hazard of being a food writer and cookbook editor is that I frequently find myself smearing expensive and delicate equipment with butter, leaving floury fingerprints where they are least wanted, and making my general mark in chocolate and gently spreading spots of olive oil. As occupational hazards go, it's not a bad one. So what if my mouse is a bit sticky or my keyboard has to be air-blasted of crumbs every few days? My digital camera has smears and smudges everywhere but on the lens - and isn't that what really matters? It's such a small price to pay for getting to write about food, and prepare it, and sample it on a regular basis.

So, as I'm writing this, I've got glass of milk by my mouse hand and a pile of Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops within reach of the other hand. I've got melted Whoppers stuck in my molars, and the prospect of waking up to a container full of freshly baked cookies is giving me the warm fuzzies.

Peanut Butter Whoppers

But let's talk about the cookies. To be honest, I didn't know what to expect from these. Malt powder? I've never even had Ovaltine. Whoppers? Okay, sure, but in a cookie? Hmmm. I decided to trust Dorie on this one and ask no questions. I would just make the cookie.

First up was the malt powder issue. I had no idea where to find such a thing, or even that it was still available. (Wasn't malt powder something that school nurses prescribed to bulk up scrawny kids in the 1960s?) I planned on using Ovaltine instead, as that's mentioned as an acceptable substitute. But after reading through a few comments on the TWD Web site, I read that one baker had found malt powder at her local Wal-Mart. I was a little surprised but not completely astounded; my own Wal-Mart carries some interesting products. (Pocky! Palm hearts! Cajeta!) So I checked, and - hot-diggity - it was there! Carnation makes it, and it comes in plain (malt flavor, not vanilla) and chocolate. It's in the hot beverages aisle, snugged up between the Ovaltine and the hot cocoa mixes.

Malt Powder

Next, I went after the Whoppers. Here, I decided to depart from the original a little. I chose Peanut Butter Whoppers instead of the regular kind. Nothing against regular Whoppers, it's just that I really, really love the Peanut Butter Whoppers and I thought the flavor contrast would add something interesting to the cookie. I'm so glad I made this choice! The peanut butter coating on the Whoppers added just the right something I was looking for. The cookies retain their chocolate-malt flavor, and the essence of peanut butter is a nice surprise whenever you bite into a chunk of Whopper.

I prepped the dough the afternoon before and baked it off the next day, so it was in the fridge for about 24 hours. I think this helped the dough retain its shape when baked, because the cookies didn't spread much and they stayed nice and dense in the center. I'm not sure how this affected the texture of the end product though, as these cookies seem extremely willing to absorb ambient moisture. In other words, they stay a bit tacky and should be stored between layers of waxed paper to keep them from sticking to each other. Maybe it's the malt powder that produces this effect, but whatever causes it, it's actually not all bad. The cookie stays moist and cakelike, providing a nice matrix for the chocolate chips and crisp-chewy Whopper bits. Another hit from Dorie!

Thanks for choosing this one, Rachel!


  1. Hahaha my camera is smudged with chocolate and butter and all other things as well!

    Gorgeous cookies! They look phenomenal!

  2. I wish I'd used regular malt powder; mine didn't really taste all that malty, but of course they were amazingly delicious anyway. Melted malty molars, oh yeah. Good stuff. Your photos are gorgeous!

  3. ~Teanna: Oh good! I'm so glad it's not just me! Thank you. :)

    ~Lori: Thanks so much! Well, I don't think mine tasted that malty either, actually, though my husband begged to differ. There is a definite "taste" but I'm not sure anyone who didn't know there was malt powder in there would be able to define it. Yummy, of course.

  4. here i am!...:)
    Your cookies look delicious... I've never tried malt powder too but i'm curious about it.

    I'm sure that they were super yummy! ;)

  5. Your cookies look really, really great! The PB whoppers almost look like nuts in your pictures. Nice job!

  6. peanut butter whoppers! they sounds fabulous!

  7. I haven't seen peanut butter whoppers, but I'm going to look for them! I love peanut butter and chocolate together.

  8. Lovely Lovely photos and delicious looking cookies!!!!

  9. ~Thank you for your kind words, DeL Sisters, Leonor, Bridgett, Pamela (they do look like nuts!), and Tammy! I really appreciate them!

    ~Shari: PB Whoppers are so incredibly good. I have to hide the carton from myself! The Strawberry Milkshake Whoppers are mighty fine too!

    ~Food Librarian: Thank you so much! The more of these cookies I eat, the more I like them. The texture is really unique - must be the malt powder.

  10. NICE pictures there. I am jealous about the PB Whoppers. I want some! :(

  11. My cookies were sticky too, the next day, but it didn't keep me from enjoying them! Love the PB Whopper sub!

  12. ~Sugar Betty: Thank you! I get my PB Whoppers at Wal-Mart. I've seen them elsewhere in little boxes, but I by them in a quart-size carton!

    ~Mevrouw Cupcake: You, know, the stickiness is growing on me, as is the incredible texture of these. I put them in the freezer to see if that would dry them out a little - nope. Still sticky when defrosted, but just as yum.

  13. Mmmm, I will definitely have to try the peanut butter whoppers. That sound divine!

    Nice job, your cookies look fantastic!

  14. I wish they had Peanutbutter Whoppers here in Holland, I would love to try them in these cookies!!

  15. Oh, Yum! I have seen these everywhere lately and really must make them. What a fun cookie!

  16. Great post, I like the choices you made with these. I ended up taking the "chocolate" fork of every road, so mine were really dark and rich. If I make these again, I'll use the pb whoppers or the cool peanut butter milk balls from Trader Joes - saw it on another TWD blog.

  17. What a wonderful blog! Those pictures look so gorgeous and it's definitely making me consider another batch of cookies this afternoon. I spotted your rosemary focaccia before I came to leave a comment and now I've got to go read that recipe too.

  18. ~Jacque: Thank you!! Do try the PB Whoppers - they're amazing. Someone in my household found my stash and polished off the rest of the carton. :(

    ~Marthe: I'm sorry that you can't find these in Holland, but I've been to Holland and I know you have many other yummy goodies (and some of the best pancakes known to man!). Still, the PB Whoppers are pretty special! :)

    ~Patsyk: I can't believe how much I actually like this cookie. Every time I eat one, I like them more! We ate a few the first day, then I froze the rest between layers of waxed paper. I've defrosted a few every day since - can't stop eating them! The texture is amazing!

    ~n.o.e./Nancy: Believe it or not, I don't have a Trader Joe's anywhere near me, so I'll have to be happy with the PB Whoppers, but they'll do. Next I'm going to try these with a combo of regular and PB chips, as others have suggested. I love these things!

    ~Prudy: Thanks so much!! I am in love with these cookies - I can't even believe how much I love them! I'm really more of a butter/sugar cookie fan, but I can't get enough of these. :)

  19. Oh yum! That's so funny about your messy equipment. My poor laptop goes through the same thing. Most of the recipes I follow are online and the poor dear gets lugged in and sat next to the stove nearly everytime I cook.

  20. Your pictures are lovely and I really enjoyed reading your blog. I can never think of much to write..But..I can sure talk! Thank you for the compliment on my name. I would love to open a bakery with that name!

  21. Hey Sandy! Thanks for stopping by my blog and offering such kind words! I am lovin' your blog. Your pictures are goregous! Funny thing about the malt. My Mom always had it around while I was growing up. I used to love to drink it. I was surprised by how many didn't know about it! (Thanks Mom...)

  22. Malt is a staple in our house. I love adding it to several things! I tried these cookies when I first started blogging... I think I'll have to try them again because all the pics of them all over the blogosphere are making me hungry!
    My camera and laptop always have some kind of food substance on them...usually flour!

  23. ~Arika: I'm so glad to hear it's not just me! Imagine explaining to the computer repair guy at Best Buy, "That's right, I said that stuff between the keys is Bordelaise sauce. No, not the green stuff. That's a mint reduction."

    ~Flourchild: Thank you! I hope you do open a bakery with that name - it's terrific!!

    ~Glass Slipper Cakery: Thank you!! I'd heard about malteds and eaten malt balls and read about malt powder in the Judy Blume books of my youth, but I'd never actually seen malt powder till these cookies! Now, I'm hooked.

  24. Wow these look great, I may have to add them to my holiday cookies. :)


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