As we entered 2008, most of us with great designs on making this a better year, I thought what more appropriate recipe to make than Dorie Greenspan’s World Peace Cookies? Nice sentiment for the new year, right? I thought so, anyway. So, I pulled out Baking: From my Home to Yours and dove right in.

Now, while these are named in honor of universal harmony, there was anything but peace in my kitchen as I made these. The recipe warned that these cookies might crack and crumble, so I thought I was prepared for that. But, when every one of them came apart when I sliced them, I was definitely discouraged. I envisioned these being lovely, round, perfect little cookies. Not so much.

They ended up being mostly round. And primarily non-lumpy. And nice to look at… if you squint.

In hindsight, a little more time in the refrigerator could have been beneficial. But, because their three hours in the fridge were up after 11pm, I didn’t really want to wait any longer.

As I’ve learned, however, the most important thing is how the finished product tastes. Using only that criteria, these cookies are beautiful! They are super rich and delicate. The addition of fleur de sel really sets these apart. This recipe really finds just the right balance of salty and sweet.

While the end result wasn’t quite what I envisioned, these cookies were certainly worth the time and effort (and cursing) that went into them. I can only hope that my next foray into baking these delicious cookies will yield a much prettier cookie. They certainly couldn’t be any tastier.

Yield: about 36 cookies

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 37 minutes
World Peace Cookies

  • 1 & 1/4 cups (150g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup (28g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 11 tablespoons (155g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup (133g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel or 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 ounces (142g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped into chips

Instructions

  1. Sift together the flour, cocoa, and baking soda. Set aside.
  2. Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until soft and creamy. Add the brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Beat for 2 minutes.
  3. Turn off the mixer and add the dry ingredients. Pulse the mixer at low speed about 5 times, a second or two each time. Mix just until the flour disappears into the dough. The dough should look a little crumbly. Add the chocolate pieces and stir just until mixed.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a work surface. Divide the dough in half. Shape each half into logs about 1 & 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. (The dough may be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.)
  5. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line two baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper.
  6. Slice the logs into rounds about 1/2-inch thick. These are likely to crack and crumble as they are cut. Squeeze the dough back together and place each cookie on baking sheets, leaving about 1 inch between them.
  7. Bake, one pan at a time, for 12 minutes. These cookies won’t look done or be firm. Cool the cookies on the pan on a cooling rack. Serve warm or cool completely and store.

Notes

Recipe slightly adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours.

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    25 Comments on “World Peace Cookies”

  1. these are certainly the most delicious cookies I have ever had. My dough crumbled too, eventhough I chilled it overnight. …

  2. So funny, I baked these today too. I left them in the fridge for several hours (maybe 5?) and they didn’t crack too badly…still not the roundest of cookies, but they taste sooo good. Especially with milk. Yum.

  3. i made these as well, and was disappointed after all the hype- my dough crumbled as well, and was difficult to work with.

  4. I just made these last night, but only chilled them for about an hour in the fridge. A few crumbled a bit at the edges, but not badly at all. Perhaps refrigerating for less than the recommended time actually helps? I agree that regardless of appearance, they taste wonderful.

  5. It’s good to know other people have had some issues with these, too. The crumbling was certainly a pain, but they just taste so good that in the end I didn’t care. At least they were more or less presentable.

  6. Instead of making rolls & slicing, would it work to just scoop into small balls & flatten slightly? Ingredients sure are tempting, tho’

  7. JEP, I don’t think so. The dough was actually a lot more crumbly before it was refrigerated. These didn’t have much liquid in them, so refrigerating them did help hydrate the flour. I may have to experiment with these some time and see what will make them work for me.

  8. That is disappointing that they were so crumbly.
    I had some bad cookie experiences a few weeks ago, as well. (Don’t use cookie recipes from the Land O’Lakes website)

    At least they were delicious! Maybe you could crumble them up and make a World Peace Cookie ice cream?

  9. I’ve looking at this recipe for a long time… I think you’ve convinced me to finally make these!! Great pic!

    Lori
    http://TheRecipeGirl.blogspot.com

  10. Emiline, World Peace Cookie ice cream sounds wonderful! If only I had some cookie dough left….

    Lori, I hope you like the cookies.

  11. Hi Jennifer. I just got Dori’s cookbook for Christmas and kept looking at this recipe. If I can find fleur de sel, I’ll give these a try! Nice to know they can be tempermental!
    I’m your new adoptee! I subscribed by e-mail although I already had you in my feeds! Nice to meet ya!

  12. Mine crumbled and were a lot of work to get back together as well. If you slice them thicker they will mostly only crumble on the edges and a commenter at Smitten Kitchen wrote that she always leaves out one T of flour and one T of sugar to help make them more manageabl. Haven’t tried it yet, but it’s worth a try!

  13. Ah these cookies have been on my “to make” list for a long time! I think yours look great.

  14. Hi, Megan! I look forward to getting to know you and your blog.

    Lisa, thanks for the tip. I’ll keep that in mind for the next time.

    Thanks, Ashley!

  15. These were my big hit of the holiday baking season after finding the recipe on epicurious. Strangely, I had no problems at all with slicing them – they crumbled nary a bit. Another great thing about finding this recipe is that I got her cookbook for Christmas and am enjoying working my way through it – last night’s Coconut Chocolate Cream Pie was delicious!

  16. Tracy, I’m glad yours worked well. And Coconut Chocolate Cream Pie?!? I must look into that one.

  17. I’ve made these quite a few times now and the first time I did, they didn’t turn out so well. Definitely give them another try, they can be so much easier! I know for myself, the first time they crumbled and fell apart and I think it’s because my butter wasn’t soft enough to begin with and they never came together like they should. But after initially having difficulties, it’s been smooth sailing ever since.

  18. Whenever I may these, I stick them in the freezer for about an hour and then go ahead and slice and bake. They are chilled, but aren’t so chilled that I can’t cut them, and they bake up in the same amount of time (and yes, this is the cookie recipe I return to over and over. I adore them).

  19. Brilynn, thanks for the encouragement. These are far too good not to give them another try.

    Carly, thanks for the freezer tip. I’ll keep it in mind for next time.

  20. I made these last night following the smitten, kitchen directions…plus, I pulsed the dough a couple extra times and then instead of putting them in the fridge (short on time), placed them in the freezer for an hour and 20 mins and then in the fridge for 30 mins…

    Cut into 1/2 slices only 2 of the 36 cookies had crumbles…just use a really sharp knife and all was well with the cookies

  21. Thanks for the tips, Whitney.

  22. I’m trying to make these now and they’re just a crumbly awful mess!

    One thing, I don’t have a stand mixer. That may have contributed.

    When I try to slice the logs they are not holding together AT ALL! Sort of how baking chocolate is so dry that you can’t really slice it without crumbles all over.

    In being impatient I tried a bit of time in the freezer, I’m thinking the dough got too cold, so I’m /hoping/ if I warm the dough up it will become sliceable, but not as crumbly as it was to begin with.

    Next time I will make them with less flour/sugar, as suggested, and perhaps a bit more butter since you can’t exactly add some more milk to these cookies!

  23. Ryan, I had a lot of trouble with these, too. They are so delicious, but definitely a trying experience.

  24. I’ve made these a few times, and found them more forgiving than most folks here…I think if you let them set up long enough, then just squish the crumbly bits together if they crumble a bit, you’ll be fine.

    Also, and excellent source for a unique fluer de sel is: http://www.thespicehouse.com/spices/malandel-fleur-de-sel-french-sea-salt

  25. I’ve made these before as well, and I think they are absolutely heaaavenly! I, too, had the problem with the crumbling, but I just made sure to hold the sides together as I cut, which made it a bit easier to push together once they all cam apart! Definitely worth the waiting and the crumbling, wouldn’t change one thing about them 😉

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