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Old 07-26-21, 06:17 PM  
Tugger31
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Question Off Topic: Recipes

I'm looking for a great chocolate chip cookie recipe for an upcoming event that I had to take over last minute. The person of honor loves chocolate chip cookies that are...1. soft, with slightly crisp outside 2. puffy, craggy looking NOT flat, crisp 3. complex flavor. She says many cookies look great and taste is pretty good, but not excellent. She says the flavor always seems to be missing something.

Thanks!
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Old 07-26-21, 06:22 PM  
sherry7899
 
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https://abountifulkitchen.com/school...t-week-in-our/
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Old 07-26-21, 08:05 PM  
BunnyHop
 
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Here are a few bake offs that might be useful to read:

https://www.thepancakeprincess.com/2...okie-bake-off/

https://www.thepancakeprincess.com/2...okie-bake-off/

I haven't made more than a few, but these choices are worth exploring.

My personal favorite is the New York Times recipe for the cookie base, and just a single cup of chocolate chips. I use less salt than called for overall, and don't sprinkle mine with salt either. (Not a fan of salting everything sweet.) The real NYT recipe uses a ton of fancy chocolate that I do not want and couldn't be bothered to acquire. (Ghirardelli or Guittard semi-sweet chips work fine for me)

Here's a link to a blog post by someone else who really likes it too. Not sure where they stand on the salt issue, it's been a while since I read it. https://www.mybakingaddiction.com/ne...ookies-recipe/

Oh, and FYI, to spare you some reading the NYT recipe is one of those that has you rest the dough for three days. I minimize hassles by forming the dough into balls while it is still soft and chilling them in a ziploc bag for the rest of the time. My favorite variation is the one that makes the great big cookies, since I find they warm up nicely in the microwave once baked. OTOH, a smaller portion is probably a more reasonable, healthful choice, if you're in need of such a thing.
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Old 07-26-21, 08:18 PM  
Lori_Michigan
 
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I make really incredibly good chocolate chip cookies. (Sorry so braggy!) My family requests them for all occasions. My son thinks I should sell them!

Here you go:
2 sticks of salted butter softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vanilla (yes, that's TABLESPOONS, trust me!)
2 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons salt (yes, 2)
1 whole package milk chocolate chips

Whip the butter and sugars really well. Add the eggs and beat. Then the vanilla and beat. Stir in the flour, baking soda, and salt. Then the chocolate chips. Cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 or 375 if your oven runs cold. I use an ice cream scooper to scoop out the same size cookies. This usually makes about 18 cookies. I bake on parchment lined cookie sheets for about 10 minutes. I take them out about a minute before they look too done and I let them cool on the cookie sheet until they're cool enough to stack or eat (So they kind of continue cooking without getting too crispy).

The extra vanilla and salt really make these outstanding. The large size makes them really chewy on the inside but rewardingly crispy on the outside.

Enjoy!
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Old 07-26-21, 08:43 PM  
adawn
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The recipe I use may satisfy the requirements listed as I like fat chewy chocolate chip cookies with browned butter and good vanilla flavor but they still have a slight crisp on the outside and are very craggy. Mine do deflate somewhat after pulling out of the oven but remain pretty thick and chewy. I can't tolerate most other people's chocolate chip cookies at this point (no offense). There is a restaurant near me (Prairie Grass Cafe) that also makes the perfect homemade chocolate chip cookie that is on par (perhaps better?) than the cookie I make so I will order it there sometimes. They also have the perfect chocolate cake, no joke. My sister is a foodie and has eaten all over the country and world and their chocolate cake is the best. It's unfortunate because now I won't eat other chocolate cakes because I live near a place that makes the perfect one.

But back to the chocolate chip cookie recipe.

1. I brown the butter. (This is the main key.)

2. I weigh my flour and sugars (no measuring cups). I have made the recipe using measuring cups but feel it comes out a bit better using a scale and takes some of the guesswork out of packing the dark brown sugar.

3. I use Frontier Co-op Vanilla Extract from Whole Foods. If this is not available, you can use Simply Organic Pure Vanilla Extract. My uncle says Costco also has a good vanilla extract but I am leery of deviating from what produces the perfect chocolate chip cookie (for me).

4. I DO NOT use Nestle Toll House chocolate chips. I used to think my sister was being weird/annoying when she said she couldn't tolerate them anymore in cookies and that they detracted from an otherwise tasty good cookie. Well, now I prefer not to eat them either. They just don't taste good to me anymore. I usually use (when they're not out of stock) Costco's 51% cacao semisweet chocolate chips in the white resealable bag (NOT the newer Costco semisweet chocolate chips in the red/white non-resealable bag). If unavailable, one could try Ghirardelli semisweet chocolate chips. My mom likes the 60% cacao Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate chips (I like them too) but they're kind of fat/flat shaped so I've never tried them in cookies. FWIW, I have tried Guittard's extra dark chocolate chips (red bag, 63% cacao) but I only ate them; I didn't end up putting them in cookies because Costco got the 51% chips back in stock. I prefer the 60% cacao Ghirardelli chocolate chips vs. the Guittard 63% (at least for snacking) because the Ghirardelli are smoother/creamier, but Costco's 51% cacao remain my personal fave for snacking and baking.

5. I use some good quality Vollrath baking sheets and put parchment paper down before I drop the cookies. I hesitate to recommend the Vollrath baking sheets because we bought ours back in 2011 and some people on amazon say the quality isn't as good now?

So the recipe is you basically follow the Cook's Illustrated recipe for Thick & Chewy chocolate chip cookies, but you sort of follow all of the butter browning advice from their Perfect chocolate cookie recipe.

Here's how it goes...

Yield: 16-18 large cookies or 27 smaller cookies (large=approx 3.5x3.5" cookies, smaller=approx 2.5x25"--that's measured after baking)*
Bake time: 15-18 minutes (I usually do 16 minutes max for either the large or smaller size.)

(BTW, every time I've attempted to double this recipe, it DOES NOT work out well so I just make individual batch after batch if I need more.)

Ingredients:

2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (10 5/8 oz) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 stick) unsalted butter -- put 1 stick plus 1 tablespoon (so 9 tbs butter) in a pan for browning. Put the remaining 3 tablespoons butter in a stainless steel, pyrex, or other heatproof bowl and set aside.
1 cup packed (7 oz) light or dark brown sugar (I use dark brown)
1/2 cup (3.5 oz) white granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1-1.5 cups semisweet chocolate chips (I use approx 3.25oz or a rounded 1/2 cup full since I prefer more cookie dough/less chips but that's just personal preference. I sort of eyeball it when I get to that stage and depending on if they're for me or a chocolate lover, I adjust the amount of chips used.)

Directions:

1. Adjust the oven racks to the upper- and lower-middle positions and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or spray them with nonstick cooking spray. (I use parchment paper and wait to preheat & do the parchment paper until Step 7.)

2. Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl; set aside.

3. Dump the white and brown sugars into a bowl and set aside (I don't usually even bother mixing them).

4. Separate the yolk from one egg and dump that extra yolk into a glass or dish with the contents of the other egg and set aside. (I do this so I'm ready to go once the butter is browned.)

5. Heat 9 tablespoons of the butter in a 10-inch stainless steel or cast iron skillet (I use stainless steel) over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. (You have to stand right there at the stove stirring constantly or it will burn.) Continue cooking, swirling the pan (I swirl the whisk, not the pan) constantly until the butter is dark golden brown and has a nutty aroma, 1 to 3 minutes (I started using a silicone whisk but you can use whatever). Remove skillet from heat and pour the browned butter into a large heatproof bowl (where your 3 tablespoons of remaining butter are waiting). Pour the browned butter right on top of those 3 waiting tablespoons of butter in the bowl and stir/whisk until completely melted.

6. Dump the white and brown sugar into the melted butter bowl and stir together. (I kind of let it sit for a minute or so after stirring together so the sugar soaks up all the butter).

7. Add vanilla to the bowl with the butter and whisk until fully incorporated. Add the egg and egg yolk and whisk until the mixture is smooth with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds. (This is the point where I preheat the oven to 325 and lay the parchment paper on the cookie sheets.) Let the mixture stand for 3 minutes, then whisk for 30 seconds. Repeat the process of resting and whisking 2 more times until the mixture is thick, smooth, and shiny. (I don't actually time myself between stirs. I start doing kitchen cleanup and just periodically stir the bowl every few minutes or so when I remember to and when the surface is starting to look glassy/shiny again.)

8. Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir in the flour mixture until just combined, about 1 minute (I dump the flour mixture all at once on top of the wet mixture and FOLD in the flour mixture with a really large spatula until just barely combined). Fold in the chocolate chips while you can still see a bit of flour specs/streaks here and there (don't stir too much) and give the dough a final stir to ensure there are no hidden flour pockets. (I stir as little as possible to be honest. I mainly just fold.)

9. Dropping the cookies onto the pan...Now here's where the recipes diverge a bit more and I mainly just follow the first one, loosely.

The Perfect CCC recipe instructs, "Scoop the dough into 16 even portions, each about 3 tablespoons, and arrange them 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets, 8 dough balls per sheet."

The Thick & Chewy CCC recipe instructs, "Roll a scant 1/4 cup of the dough into a ball. Hold the dough ball with the fingertips of both hands and pull into 2 equal halves. Rotate the halves 90 degrees and, with jagged surfaces facing up, join the halves together at their base, again forming a single ball, being careful not to smooth the dough's uneven surface. Place the formed dough balls on the prepared baking sheets, jagged surface up, spacing them 2 1/2 inches apart."

What I do...I'm lazy and just get a round soup spoon and drop the cookies onto the sheet, trying to make them uniformly sized lumps as I go, utilizing my (clean) hands, and I usually get about 16-18 cookies total between the two baking sheets.

10. Bake until the cookies are light golden brown and the outer edges start to harden yet the centers are still soft and puffy, 15 to 18 minutes, rotating the baking sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through the baking time. Cool the cookies on the sheets. Remove the cooled cookies from the baking sheets with a side metal spatula. (I bake for 15-16 minutes, rotating halfway through as per the recipe, cool on the sheets, and I use any old spatula I want to remove them from the sheets once cool. And remember, don't leave them in the oven too long even if they don't look quite done.)

"Note: These oversized cookies are chewy and thick, like many of the chocolate chip cookies sold in gourmet shops and cookie stores. They rely on melted butter and an extra egg yolk to keep their texture soft. These cookies are best served warm from the oven but will retain their texture even when cooled. To ensure the proper texture, cool the cookies on the baking sheet. Oversized baking sheets allow you to get all the dough into the oven at one time. If you're using smaller baking sheets, put fewer cookies on each sheet and bake them in batches."

*The smaller cookies are just smaller versions of the bigger cookie. Same taste/texture except after cooling completely, the smaller size was slightly less soft/dough-like in the center. I've only done the smaller size this once, so I could decrease baking time by a minute or two but some people may prefer the more slightly more fully-cooked centers of the smaller cookies. They're still soft and chewy with crisp outside, just less doughy center.

So that's about it. Sorry for the novel. It's really super easy. I can make them in my sleep and quickly at this point.

ETA: As long as you brown the butter and follow the recipe, the cookies should come out well even if you don't weigh the dry ingredients and just use measuring cups, and even if you use any old vanilla extract you want (but I'm telling you, the flavor of good vanilla extract is worth it), and chocolate chip brands are kind of a personal preference and I'm not even sure if the baking sheet matters all that much. So please don't think the recipe results are dependent on those factors that I listed initially (aside from the browned butter and following the recipe steps--because those do make/break the cookies).

Last edited by adawn; 07-28-21 at 02:26 AM. Reason: Edited to add more detail since doing some test batches
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Old 07-26-21, 08:49 PM  
Patti S.
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Some good recipes here. I can see a lot of us here are big time home cook fanatics.

adawn, let us know if you ever get that chocolate cake recipe!
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Old 07-26-21, 09:28 PM  
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Why ..oh why did I open this thread?!?😩
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Old 07-26-21, 09:49 PM  
sherry7899
 
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Originally Posted by fanofladyvols View Post
Why ..oh why did I open this thread?!?😩
Exactly! Now I want to recipe test!
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Old 07-26-21, 10:23 PM  
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Originally Posted by sherry7899 View Post
Exactly! Now I want to recipe test!
Ditto!
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Old 07-26-21, 11:23 PM  
bzar
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i use the Nestle toll House recipe. here's some tips:

1) use unsalted REAL butter
2) use almond extract rather than vanilla
3) refrigerate the dough over night before baking
4) consider browning the butter - this carmelizes the butter.
5) i weigh my ingredients for butter, flour, sugars and chips
6) i use a silipat liner in my pans
7) use a cookie scoop to ensure even-sized/height of cookies
8) consider walnuts: i once did an experiment at work. the ones with nuts ran out before the non-nut version.
9) consider subbing 1/4 c. of the flour with powdered PB2 (peanut butter 2). it makes the cookie taste richer.

try out recipes before giving it to your friend! maybe do half batches to try some of the suggestions.
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