Crafty Cooking: Basic Cookies

by Dan Greenwood and Harri Caddick

It’s one of the most important commodities on earth. From an evolutionary beacon to help our ancestors locate vitamin-packed fruit to today’s crystalline mega-food, sugar can be used to devastating effect to induce a powerful sensation of pleasure in the mouth, with side-effects ranging from increased energy to mild nausea. However despite its dangers there are times when complex carbohydrates just won’t get us through the day, times where only something as sickeningly sweet as our basic cookie recipe will do.

The recipe doesn’t contain egg so with the right margarine it is suitable for vegans, and more importantly this means you can safely eat big spoonfuls of the uncooked mixture as you go. The method is fairly straightforward, but it should be noted that the cookies will not fully solidify until they cool: avoid the temptation to extend the cooking time if they are soft. If, like us, you are using an ancient old Tricity Bendix Tiara or Baby Belling with a missing heat seal, you may need to up the temperature dial but do so with caution.

200g margarine
200g light muscovado sugar
2 large tbsp golden syrup
300g self-raising flour
200g dark chocolate, cut into small but rough chunks
Zest of two oranges
1 tsp ground cinnamon


–  Preheat the oven to 160°C/Gas Mark 3. Grease two baking trays.

–  Beat together the margarine and sugar. Stir in the golden syrup.

–  Stir in the flour half at a time.

–  Stir in the chopped chocolate, zest and cinnamon so that they are evenly distributed.

–  Use a teaspoon to put heaped dollops of the mixture onto the trays. They will spread out during cooking so space them well. The recipe will make 18-24 large cookies.

–  Bake in the oven for exactly 15 minutes, after which time they will have spread out and begun browning, but will still be squidgy.

–  Remove from the oven. They will solidify and crisp up as they cool. Put on a big plate and enjoy.