Friday, April 5, 2013

Giant Symphony Cookies for Two

Here I am, posting another cookie recipe. But this isn’t just any cookie recipe. It’s a cookie recipe that makes two as-big-as-your-face cookies. Do I need to mention these cookies have chocolate? No? That’s just too obvious…after all, this is a cookie recipe shared by me. I should probably specify the type of chocolate: Symphony candy bar pieces. They are unbelievably amazing in these cookies.

Giant Symphony Cookies are fit for a celebration. But not just any celebration.

As you might know, I’m a new food blogger. I started this blog in January. You and I are still getting to know each other. Something I haven’t shared with you yet (and I can’t believe it!) is that I am a Chi Omega. That’s right. I’m Greek. And I’m proud of it. The X and the Horseshoe are my letters.

It’s because of Chi Omega that I have an obsession with owls; I think the colors Cardinal and Straw are totally meant for each other; and I believe the white carnation is one of the most beautiful flowers. Ever.

Bid Day 2003 (freshman year) with my pledge sisters Megan and Brianne.

Oh yeah. And it’s because of Chi Omega that I have made the very best friends I could ask for. Women of all ages and from all walks of life. Talented, driven women. Compassionate, selfless women. Leaders, volunteers…I could really go on and on. Really. My sisters are incredible.

Bid Day 2004 with Amberly and Stephanie. We lived on the same dorm floor freshman year.

Today, April 5, Chi Omega celebrates 118 years. 118 years! Since 1895, Chi Omega has been changing the lives of collegiate women for the better, providing them with leadership, service and learning opportunities, friendships that last a lifetime, and sweet memories.

My younger sister Courtney, who initiated in January 2006, at a country-themed date party.

My Executive Board in Fall 2005. I got the privilege to serve the chapter with these inspiring women.

One of my favorite memories was the first time I ever heard Chi Omega’s The Symphony. I was a soon-to-be college freshman at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I remember sitting in the living room of the Chi Omega chapter house during a formal Recruitment event. A handful of Chi Omega sisters shared, in such touching ways, why they decided to choose Chi Omega. Then, before I knew it, the lines of a poem, I determined, were being shared, with a different sister reciting each line. It was so beautiful. And I was so captivated. And I had goose bumps. At that moment, I knew that I wanted to be a part of a sisterhood that believed the words they were saying. I could feel their love for Chi Omega. I could feel their pride in Chi Omega. Chi Omega was calling me, and I was listening.

The Symphony

To live constantly above snobbery of word or deed;
to place scholarship before social obligations and character before appearances;
to be, in the best sense, democratic rather than 'exclusive', 
and lovable rather than 'popular';
to work earnestly, to speak kindly, to act sincerely, to choose thoughtfully that course which occasion and conscience demand;
to be womanly always; to be discouraged never;
in a word, to be loyal under any and all circumstances to my Fraternity and her highest teachings and to have her welfare ever at heart that she may be a symphony of high purpose and helpfulness in which there is no discordant note.
Ethel Switzer Howard, Xi Chapter

Isn’t The Symphony beautiful? And so encouraging?

In case you were wondering, I got goose bumps just typing it.

I think it’s perfect to celebrate the 118th anniversary of Chi Omega’s Founder’s Day with a sweet treat that incorporates the Symphony candy bar. It’s only appropriate. And what’s better than a make-one-to-eat-and-a-make-one-to-share recipe? These Giant Symphony Cookies are buttery and chocolate-y. The edges are slightly crispy, but they mostly have a melt-in-your-mouth texture. So that makes them the all sorts of irresistible. 

I chose to use a Symphony bar with almonds and toffee chips. I can’t resist anything with toffee, so it was a must for me. You can use the creamy milk chocolate (plain) bar. Your call. Rather than chopping up the bar, I broke the chocolate rectangles into small pieces with my hands. I worked rather quickly so I wouldn’t create a melt-y mess. Chopping chocolate can be kind of a pain because of the tiny pieces that get everywhere. But, if you would rather chop, don’t let me stop you!

The dough comes together quickly and easily. Once the dough ingredients are incorporated well, the Symphony chocolate pieces are added in, and mixed gently with a spatula. It’s the same process you follow when making chocolate chip cookies. You know what I’m sayin’.

After the dough is shaped into two very round and tall balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet, a few more Symphony pieces are strategically placed on top each. It’s like putting the bow on a present. Or the cherry on a sundae.

The cookies will spread during baking. Towards the end of baking time, you will want to watch the cookies to be sure they don’t get too crispy or brown (unless that’s how you like them). When I took these out of the oven, the edges were slightly brown, and the center was a tad soft. Perfection.

The best part about this recipe is that it makes two cookies. One of these cookies is meant to be shared. Enjoy it in the company of a good friend (over a cup of coffee, of course) or wrap it up and gift it to a sister. It’s the perfect way to celebrate a friendship!

Happy Founder’s Day, Chi Omega! 118 years strong. I’m so proud of and thankful for our sisterhood.

The ladies of my pledge class on our last Bid Day in 2006.

I am a Chi Omega.

I am the first in my family to “Go Greek.” I pledged Kappa Chapter at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in August 2003, and I initiated in January 2004. After graduation, I moved to West Lafayette, Indiana, to attend graduate school at Purdue University. It was there, at Chi Beta Chapter, that I began advising, and I served as New Member Educator Advisor. After I graduated, my husband and I moved to Manhattan, Kansas, so he could pursue his Ph.D. at Kansas State University. At Kappa Alpha Chapter, I served as Personnel and Scholarship Advisor. Last fall after my husband’s graduation, we moved to South Dakota. I have connected with the women of Xi Theta Chapter at South Dakota State University, and I look forward to transitioning onto their advisory board in the near future. I am so grateful that I have remained involved with Chi Omega beyond my college years. I’ve had so many wonderful experiences and opportunities that I could never have imagined. I truly believe Chi Omega is for a lifetime.

If you are interested in learning more about Chi Omega, I encourage you to visit the Fraternity’s website

Giant Symphony Cookies
Adapted from: Sally’s Baking Addiction 

4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature
4 Tbsp. granulated sugar
4 Tbsp. light brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
4.75 oz. (XL-size) Symphony candy bar, in pieces and divided 
              (I found this in my grocer’s candy aisle)

Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda and salt. Mix well and set aside.

In a medium-sized bowl, mix the butter and sugars together with a spatula. Add the egg and vanilla and mix well. Pour the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Mix to combine. With a spatula, gently fold in 12-rectangles’ worth of Symphony bar pieces.

Place the dough on the baking sheet, making two tall balls about 9 inches from each other. Use as spoon to shape the dough. With the remaining 4-rectangles’ worth of Symphony bar pieces, top the cookies.

Bake for 15-16 minutes, until the edges are lightly browned and the rest of the cookie appears somewhat soft. Allow the cookie to cool completely before removing from the baking sheet. Makes two giant cookies.


  1. Chi Omega is for a lifetime! :)
    I'm probably going to make these tonight -- and eat both. There's no way I'd share these!

    1. Do it! And I won't tell anyone your secret... :) I can't believe I haven't baked with Symphony bars before these cookies. So good!