Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Trying a New Chocolate Chip Cookie

Sometimes it is fun to bake fancy things (cakes in the shape of Churches, Sarah?), but sometimes the fun comes in baking something simple and quick, that you know will be tasty, like a chocolate chip cookie.  Yes, there are many bad chocolate chip cookies out there, but most of the ones you bake yourself will be good no matter what.

These chocolate chip cookies come from David Lebovitz (you know him as our ice cream guru) in his newest book, Ready for Dessert.  Unlike most chocolate chip cookies that I have baked, these are slice and bake cookies, not drop cookies.  You form the dough into a log, let it rest in the fridge for 24 hours and then slice and bake.  I actually sliced the dough and then froze the slices, which worked really well, since this recipe made a lot of cookies and there are just two of us in the house right now.

I enjoyed this recipe, although I thought the dough needed more salt, so I will add that next time.  I used a combination of chocolate chips and chopped chocolate, since that is what I had in the house, and I omitted the nuts, since you know how we feel about nuts in baked goods.  It is really important to use good chocolate in these (chocolate that you like) because there is a lot of chocolate in here.  Overall, I enjoyed these cookies.  They are not my favorite, but I think with the addition of more salt, they could be a contender.

The recipe is after the jump.
From Ready for Dessert by David Lebovitz
2 1/2 cups (350 g) all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup (8 ounces/225 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup (215 g) packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup (150 g) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups (about 225 g) nuts, such as walnuts, pecans, almonds, or macadamia nuts, toasted and coarsely chopped 
14 ounces (400 g) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped into 1/2- to 1-inch (1.5- to 3-cm) chunks 

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. 
2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a bowl by hand), beat together the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla on medium speed just until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time until thoroughly incorporated, then stir in the flour mixture followed by the nuts and chocolate chunks. 
3. On a lightly floured work surface, divide the dough into quarters. Shape each quarter into a log about 9 inches (23 cm) long. Wrap the logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, preferably for 24 hours.
4. Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. 
5. Slice the logs into disks 3/4 inch (2 cm) thick and place the disks 3 inches (8 cm) apart on the prepared baking sheets. If the nuts or chips crumble out, simply push them back in. 
6. Bake, rotating the baking sheets midway through baking, until the cookies are very lightly browned in the centers, about 10 minutes. If you like soft chocolate chip cookies, as I do, err on the side of underbaking. 
7. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets until firm enough to handle, then use a spatula to transfer them to a wire rack. 

Yield: 48 cookies...and you'll eat them all. 

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