Sibling Rivalry, With Love (and Chocolate)

I’m a cookie girl. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some cake, ice cream, brownies and the like, but when I want a dessert, I usually want a big, thick, soft-yet chewy cookie. I’ve been baking cookies since I was a little girl, helping my grandma gently mix the dough, then fold in the chips. As they were baking, I’d standing in the kitchen for what seemed like the longest ten minutes any six-year-old had ever been forced to suffer. At the ding of the kitchen timer I’d get the first soft, right-outta-the-oven cookie, and walk into the living room with melted, delicious evidence all over my face and hands that proved I was faster than my older sister.

When my sister and I bake together these days things are pretty much the same. We take the pan out and both grab for the most appealing cookie to take a chunk out of. We also have both been on a mission to make THE BEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE imaginable. My sister may have been the first to discover the power of using cake flour in cookie batter, but this week I must [not-so] humbly admit that the stakes have been raised, dear sister. How so, you ask? Because I feel like I’ve evened the playing field with a little discovery I’d venture to say resulted in a contender for THE BEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE. Jokes aside, I can’t contain it any longer, I have to share it, so here it is…

THE BEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE

Adapted from Tyler Florence’s “My Big, Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies”

Makes about 2.5 dozen cookies
  • 2.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp.
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 four-ounce bar semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 four-ounce milk chocolate hazelnut bar, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and sea salt. Fluff with a fork until well combined. I like to do this part first cause it’s the boring part. You don’t even get to use the mixer or eat any chocolate…part of that six-year-old girl apparently still lingers…Anyway, set aside those ingredients. You’ll get to them later, because now you have better things to get to.

Now the fun begins. Take your chocolate bars out of their wrappers, and chop away! Try to get them small enough so the largest part is 3/4 of an inch. For size reference see the delicious picture atop this post (aka the reason you probably decided to read this). You should also probably eat a couple of pieces just to make sure you bought the most delicious kind.

Cream the butter alone for a minute or so, then add the sugars. Beat until fluffy and super appealing. Add the eggs one at a time, beating the first one in fully before adding the second. Mix in the vanilla and your wet ingredients are ready to roll.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients gradually, scraping the sides down with a spatula after every round of mixing. This is important because no one wants to eat a chunk of flour (remember how boring it is?). After your ingredients are nicely merged, fold in the chocolate chunks. Make sure to spread these evenly throughout the batter so everyone has a fair shot at finishing their eating experience with chocolate on their faces and hands.

Put heaping spoonfuls on a baking sheet lined with a silpat or parchment paper.


Twelve minutes later…

These are larger cookies than I usually make, but they didn’t flatten like many recipes I’ve tried. I don’t know what exactly made the magic happen, but happen it did. These had just the right balance of rich chocolate chunk to thick dough bite, and soft and gooey center to golden crumbly edge. Using chocolate chunks (as opposed to your average chips) really makes the difference, so don’t skimp on the bar you buy. The result of your efforts will be melt-in-your-mouth, disappear-quicker-than-you’d-wish, perfection.

The boy came over about an hour after these were done, and ate not one, not a couple, but five of these monsters in about twenty minutes. This is a man who forgets to eat meals, never eats dessert before dinner, and actually refuses sweets more often than not. Success? I’d say so.

Sister – I see your cake flour and raise you the above. Lovingly, of course.

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