A crinkle is one of those classical cookies right up there with chocolate chip and oatmeal. It’s a drop cookie made from the simplest dough and “dropped” ”“ hence the name ”“ in round balls onto a mound of powdered sugar and then baked. It’s a work of art when it comes out of the oven with its dramatic puffed tops, craters with cracks of white in bold contrast to the moist brownie-like center.
The best crinkles in Manila are exactly what I describe above and they’re made by Charisse Sarmiento who calls her baking company Pink Chocolate. While I’ve never associated those two words together, Charisse explains it to me, “I called my company Pink Chocolate because pink is my favorite color and anything pink is thought of as sweet to the taste and eye.” She’s also had a long love affair with chocolate, thus the majority of her products are what else, but chocolate based. More power for the chocolate lovers!
Charisse recently quit her day job to go full time into her two passions, baking and chocolate. When she sent her crinkles to me (a must-try! she says), part of her attached note read, “… I’d like to know your opinion aside from my friends and family who are biased since they all love what I make.” Well Charisse, they were all telling the truth and now you can count me in too as one of your fans!
What I find fascinating about the crinkles that Charisse makes are their sugared tops that make each cookie distinctively different. Unlike other crinkles, the sugar doesn’t evaporate or sink into the cookie as time passes. Another plus is that they stay crackly sweet and moist for days if stored at room temperature.
Crinkles by Pink Chocolate
Like every other baker I know (including myself) who can’t stop tinkering with recipes, Charisse says, “…it’s both fun and challenging to combine different tastes and textures.” She demonstrates this outstandingly with her lava cakes. Known by names such as fallen chocolate cake, molten chocolate cake, and molten lava cake, this very wet, liquid-in-the-center chocolate cake tastes better than a fully cooked one. Served warm, the residual heat and resultant liquid from the fallen middle transport flavor to the tongue better than solids.
True to her experimental nature, Charisse one-ups this restaurant classic by moving “the middle to the bottom” ”“ her cake’s chocolate center drips out through the bottom, creating a pool of dark liquid that the cake sits in. “It’s really best when warmed up a little and then topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream,” Charisse texts me. While I decline her offer to also bring me some ice cream to eat the cake with, she surprises me by bringing over a batch of “fake ice cream,” a grisly concoction of ingredients I won’t list here. Such a thoughtful person!
But since I’m used to styling “real” food (as opposed to fake), I go out and buy real vanilla ice cream and that’s what you see in the photo. While the chocolate bottom seems a bit bashful here, take my word for it that this is one of those feel-good, dual-temperature desserts: hot sauce, cold ice cream, all resting on a pillow of chocolate cake with a wondrously complex chocolate aroma. Could Christmas be any more complete?
P75/ 1 piece
P70 each for a box of 4 or 8
Charisse Sarmiento of Pink Chocolate
0917.847CAKE / (632) 952.6468 / (632) 952.6515