I hate to admit it, but I have never been satisfied with my chocolate chip cookies. Every time I make them they fall flat and run all over the baking sheet. They are crisp though, which is fine with me but my husband likes his cookies a little chewier. I am so excited to say that I have finally found the perfect recipe and it is called fittingly, Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies just like the cookies shipped to your door.
As you are probably aware, the Cook’s Illustrated magazine spends an inordinate amount of time researching and testing recipes. They recently took on chocolate chip cookies and I am so glad they did. The resultant cookie is both crisp and chewy with a pleasant toffee flavor and a nice fat top. I almost jumped up and down when I took the first batch from the oven. Instead of creaming softened butter with the sugars, part of the butter is melted and browned in a pan to release that wonderful toffee flavor and dark brown sugar is used to heighten the rich flavor. Also the sugar is allowed to rest for a while in the butter mixture to be sure it is all dissolved. Instead of the tablespoon size cookie scoop normally called for, these cookies call for 3 tablespoons rolled into a ball which gives the finished cookie it’s nice rounded top. The recipe makes only 16 cookies, but the results are worth it. David returns from his fishing trip tonight. I have a feeling he will love these cookies.
Just a quick disclaimer before I give you the recipe. To the best of my knowledge the recipe is just as it appears in the magazine. Cook’s Illustrated has a reputation for becoming upset with bloggers who change their recipes.
PERFECT CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Makes 16 cookies
Note: Avoid using a nonstick skillet to brown the butter; the dark color of the nonstick coating makes it difficult to gauge when the butter is browned. Use fresh. moist brown sugar instead of hardened brown sugar, which will make the cookies dry. This recipe works with light brown sugar, but the cookies will be less full-flavored.
1 3/4 cups (8 3/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter
1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
3/4 cup (5 1/4 ounces) packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
3/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted (optional)
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 large ( 18-by-12 inch) baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour and baking soda together in medium b0wl; set aside.
2. Heat 10 tablespoons butter in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking, swirling pan constantly until butter is dark golden brown and has a nutty aroma, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and, using heatproof spatula, transfer browned butter to large heatproof bowl. Stir remaining 4 tablespoons butter into hot butter until completely melted.
3. Add both sugars, salt, and vanilla to bowl with butter and whisk until fully incorporated. Add egg and yolk and whisk until mixture is smooth with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds. Let mixture stand 3 minutes, then whisk for 30 seconds. Repeat process of resting and whisking 2 more times until mixture is thick, smooth, and shiny. Using rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir in flour mixture until just combined, about 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if using), giving dough final stir to ensure no flour pockets remain.
4. Divide dough into 16 portions, each about 3 tablespoons (or use #24 cookie scoop). Arrange 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets, 8 dough balls per sheet (Smaller baking sheets can be used, but will require 3 batches.)
5. Bake cookies 1 tray at a time until cookies are golden brown and still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, 10 to 14 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack; cool cookies completely before serving.