Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Picture perfect at least. I actually think these chocolate chip cookies are perfect. Not only do they look good, they are pretty darn tasty as well.  If you’ve googled chocolate chip cookies recently or are an avid reader of foodie blogs, I’m sure you’ve come across the New York Times recipe for the perfect chocolate chip cookies. I have certainly read many a post about them and have been surprised by some of the ingredients (bread flour? – gluteny cookies?!) and a little skeptical about the method (i.e. chill time).  Supposedly the flavor of the cookies are brought to a whole new level if you refrigerate the dough for at least 24 hours. At least 24 hours? Who wants to wait a full day before enjoying fresh-from-the-oven chocolate chip cookies? But after trying them (and baking them 3 different times), I’m a believer. It did take some experimenting, however.

IMG_1404 For my first trial, I followed the recipe and method exactly, whipping that butter and sugar for a full 5 minutes and chilling that dough for a day. Unfortunately they came out extremely flat. I wasn’t impressed at all. But after reading the cookie chapter of The Art and Soul of Baking, I learned that beating the butter and sugar for that long is not ideal for cookie making. Whipping the butter and sugar adds air to the batter, a method typically used for desserts that you would like to rise, such as cakes. I’m not sure why the recipe would call for such a method since cookies have no where to rise and just spread out.

So for trial number two I whipped the butter and sugar for only a minute or so and still chilled the dough for 24 hours. And they came out perfect! I was so happy with them, but I was still wondering if I really needed to chill the dough for a full day.  It took a lot of planning for a simple batch of cookies and having a bowl of cookie dough just sitting in my fridge is a little tempting. I’d read posts about people trying them after refrigerating the dough for 12hrs, 24, 36 and even up to 72hrs. Always claiming that the cookies tasted better if you refrigerated the dough longer.

IMG_1414My third attempt at these babies answered that question. I made them again only chilling the dough for 1 hour and I hate to admit that I noticed a difference. They weren’t as good. They do get a more caramel-y, toffee-y flavor (like so many before me had claimed) and bake up a little more brown if you refrigerate the dough longer. The photos in this post are from the 3rd trial and you can see they’re pretty light. Don’t get me wrong, they still tasted great, but with this recipe patience is key. If you can wait, you should refrigerate the dough for at least 24 hours. Which is I made you get through a lengthy post before delivering the recipe. I’m just getting you ready to practice more patience. 😉

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So here it is, the recipe for perfect chocolate chip cookies:
copied from: The New York Times

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups minus 2 T cake flour
  • 1 2/3 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/4 t baking soda
  • 1 1/4 t baking powder
  • 1 1/2 t coarse sea salt
  • 2 1/2 sticks, unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
  • 1 cup + 2 T granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate chunks or chips
  • sea salt for garnish

Directions:

  1. Whisk together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla; scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed. Reduce the mixer to low; then add the dry ingredients; mix until just combined. Add the chocolate and mix briefly to incorporate. Press plastic wrap against the dough, and refrigerate for 24-36 hours, or up to 72 hours. (I think 24 is plenty!)
  3. When you’re ready to bake them, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Remove the bowl of dough from the fridge and allow it to soften slightly. Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper
  4. Using a standard-sized ice cream scoop, measuring about 1/3 of a cup, scoop six mounds of dough onto the baking sheet, making sure to leave room for them to spread out.
  5. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt, and bake until golden brown but still soft, 12-15 minutes. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, before transferring them to the rack to cool completely.
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2 thoughts on “Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

  1. I really had been browsing for techniques for my very own site and found your own posting, “Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies kellybaked”, do you care
    if perhaps I implement a few of your points? Thank you ,Cleta

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