Cookies with Peanut M&Ms

Yield: About 3½ dozen cookies

¾ cup King Arthur All-Purpose Flour (dip measuring cup into flour, then level with the flat end of a knife)

½ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

½ cup (1 stick) butter

1(12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips, divided

3 ounces (3 squares) unsweetened chocolate, cut into pieces

2 teaspoons instant expresso powder (I like the espresso powder sold by King Arthur Flour, www.kingarthurflour.com, 800-827-6836)

3 large eggs

1 cup granulated sugar

1/8 cup (2 tablespoons) light brown sugar, firmly packed

M&M’s Milk Chocolate Peanut Spring Pastels Candies

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

In the top of a double boiler set over simmering water (the bottom of the top of the double should not touch the water in the pan beneath), melt the butter with 1 cup of the chocolate chips and unsweetened chocolate. Remove from heat. Add espresso powder and whisk until mixture is smooth. Cool and set aside.

In the mixing bowl of an electric mixer set to medium-high speed, beat eggs with sugar for 3 minutes. Lowering speed to low, mix in chocolate mixture, blending well. Add flour mixture, mixing until just blended.

Stop mixer and fold in remaining chips, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a spatula to be sure the ingredients are well incorporated. (The mixture will be batter-like.)

Chill cookie batter for an hour, or two, to facilitate dropping by tablespoonfuls, 2-inches apart, onto a Silpat, or parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

Press top of cookies with a few equally spaced peanut M&M’s, as desired.

Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking time, or until cookies are puffed and appear somewhat crackly. Allow cookies to cool for 2 to 3 minutes, before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

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