It was a chocoholic’s dream Friday Night at the Carolina Classic Fair when Brasstown Chocolate sponsored The Great Cookie Caper Special Fun Food Contest in Yesterday Village.
Twenty adults and three youths came up with cookies chockfull of Brasstown artisan chocolate, made in Winston-Salem.
Matthew Mayers took first place and $500 in the adult category with his chocolate almond cookies with ganache frosting.
“Years ago, we used to get Gourmet magazine and (my wife) would clip recipes,” he said. “So we had this peanut butter, chocolate chip cookie with oats. I just used almond butter instead of peanut butter. And then I added a ganache with almonds on the top. Brasstown chocolate isn’t very sweet, so the ganache added just a little extra sweetness to the cookie.”
Margaret Collins won second place and $200 for a classic chocolate chunk cookie. “I make it all the time,” she said of the basic recipe, but this was the first time she tried Brasstown chocolate. “I had never been in Brasstown Chocolate before. I usually use Nestle’s. So I just went in there and asked for something that was closest to semisweet.”
Third place and $150 went to Dinah Reece of Pfafftown, who made sandwich cookies with a raspberry filling. “I just like a sandwich cookie. And I like Brasstown — it worked well. The filling helps cut the chocolate.”
In the youth category, 15-year-old Gracie Anderson of Rural Hall took first place and $200 for what she called Brasstown “brookies.”
“It’s actually brownie batter. I just made it into cookies,” she said. “I really love chocolate chip cookies, and brownies seemed like the best way to give the most chocolate taste.”
Second place and $100 in the youth category went to Davis Hill for chocolate cranberry orange sandwich cookies, and third and $50 went to Makena Cranor for chocolate coffee peanut-butter delights.
Brasstown, owned by Rom Still and Barbara Price, makes high-quality artisan chocolate. A typical 2.12-ounce bar sells for $8 online (though fair contestants got a discount). In other words, there’s a reason that these cookies tasted so darn chocolatey. And because of the expense, these recipes may not be for everyone. But other chocolates could be used. The important point would be to choose chocolates with a similar pure chocolate percentage, which correlates with how much or how little sugar the chocolate bar contains — with the higher percentage meaning that the chocolate has less sugar.