24 January 2010

the first chocolate chip cookie I *didn't* like

Recently I've been craving an American classic: chocolate chip cookies.

Now which one to make? My oatmeal choco chip one is one of my signature cookies, so no need to make that again. Alton Brown's The Chewy is delicious and my go to regular chocolate chip cookie. I've tried the NYT cookie and thought that was pretty good. I tried the recipe Ghirardelli printed on their can of choco chips. And of course I've made the classic Tollhouse cookie. I know how all of those taste. While they're all good, I'm always on the look out for other recipes to try. Maybe there's something better out there, and maybe there's not. But only one way to find out...

Instead of searching for another random chocolate chip cookie recipe online, I went with something right in my living room. This particular chocolate chip cookie came from one of my Christmas gifts: the book Baking by James Peterson. From the look of the recipe I already knew it'd be different from any of the ones I'd already tried. Only 1 egg yolk, bittersweet chocolate, and an odd butter to sugar ratio? What the hell... maybe this would Wow me.

And honestly, it didn't. They're pretty cookies, don't get me wrong... but I love a chewy, caramely, gooey centered, crisp edged cookie. These were sandy and crispy throughout, almost like shortbread. There was no balace of dough flavor to the strong chocolate at all. Full disclosure, though: I left out the nuts (I'm definitely in the no nuts in choco chip cookies camp) and maybe that would have helped the flavor balance, but by texture alone I was not a fan. But in case you do like nuts and crispier cookies... here is the recipe to try.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Baking by James Peterson

4 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 C flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt (kosher)
3/4 C butter, sliced
1/4 C white sugar
1/4 C brown sugar
1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla

Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars. Mix in the egg yolk and vanilla. Dump in all of the flour mix then mix until combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Refrigerate at least 30 min.
Preheat oven to 375.
To make approx 12 large cookies, scoop 2 tbsp of dough, round into a ball and flatten a bit. Bake for 12-14 min. To make approx 20 medium cookies (my personal preference), scoop 1 tbsp of dough into a ball, place on cookie sheet, bake 8-9 min.

They sure are pretty, and would be great with a glass of milk.

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