Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies!

So I was browsing around on Pinterest and I saw some delicious looking cookies. I clicked on the picture and visited the blog where the picture came from and read the recipe. Seemed simple enough so I repinned it and decided to try to bake these one day. Boy am I glad I did! These are by far the best chocolate chip cookies ever. In fact, they're so good I'm eating one right now as I am writing this. =)
Anyway, these are not cookies for the impatient, but let me tell you, they are worth the wait! I think the thing that makes them so good is that you let the dough chill. Collin and I love the store bought "place and bake" cookies. We think they are delicious but I love to bake and it can get pricy buying them a lot. So we stopped buying them and I started baking them. But they never turned out as good. We were always slightly disappointed. Well, not with these. They are BETTER than the store bought ones and I think it's because you let it chill!
Anyway, here is the recipe and all the secrets for baking them from the original author. (Any comments that are mine are in parenthesis)

The Only Chocolate Chip Cookie I Will Ever Need to Know How to Make For The Rest of My Life
by Shirley Hendrickson, adapted from Leite Torres

Secret 1: The use of a mix of cake flour and bread flour. Cake flour is finer, and bread flour has gluten, both important. Use them and no other.
(It took me a while to find the cake flour and as it turned out my mother-in-law found it for me at the Commisary in a box. But it's crucial to these cookies so search for it!)

Secret 2: Chilling. This is key — KEY! — to cookie texture success. The reason is that letting the dough rest allows all the eggs and the butter and the liquids to ooze and soak and hydrate into all the dry goodness. 24 hours is minimum, 36 is preferable (and noticeably better).

Also, the flavor gets crazy! Deep, caramel-y, toffee-y, and they bake up so much more deliciously brown. Plus, it lets the outside get crisp and crackly and keeps the middle almost underdone when you pull them out — they set up and turn into soft, chewy heaven.
(Collin and I made the batter on Saturday during the hurricane and then baked 12 on Monday evening and the rest of the dough on Tuesday evening. The ones we baked on Monday were incredible but the ones we baked on Tuesday were sensational! The longer you wait, the better they are!)

Secret 3: All ingredients. Room temperature. Do it. Note: The misconception with room-temperature butter: it actually doesn’t mean letting it sit out until it’s supersoft and melty. You should be able to press a slice of butter with your finger and easily make a dent, and it should crack faintly.

Secret 4: Did you know? People make their cookies way too small! It’s silliness! If you make them too small, they dry out too quick, and they get too crunchy. We want gooey and chewy! The way to achieve that is to scoop your dough out into golf-ball sized — or slightly larger — portions. I use a 1/3 c measuring cup for extra big cookies.

Secret 5: The chocolate. Sorry, Toll House. And don’t even think about the generic supermarket brand. I only use Ghiardelli 60% Cacao chips — they’re pretty widely available the best chips you can buy at a grocery store. However, if you run across anything that is 60% cacao, it’ll be good.
(Okay, so I only had the Toll House semi-sweet chocolate chips and I wasn't going out in a hurricane to buy Ghiardelli chocolate, but I like semi-sweet and I think they taste wonderful. I bet though they'd taste even better with "better" chocolate.)

Secret 6: The sprinkle of salt on the top. Makes all the sweetness sing.
(We actually didn't use this, but like she said, it would make the sweetness sing.)

Secret 7: Wait. I mean, sure, have one piping hot out of the oven, but the flavors actually meld and deepen once they cool. These are definitely cookies that get better the next day.

Secret 7 1/2: Always err on taking them out too early rather than too late – also essential for middle-softness. They continue to cook on the sheet for a few minutes, so don’t overdo it – underdone is better than overdone, every time (and you can always pop them in for a minute more if you like).

Stick to these secrets, and you will ace chocolate chip cookies forever.

2 cups minus 2 Tbsp. (8 ½ oz.) cake flour
1 2/3 cups (8 ½ oz.) bread flour
1 ¼ tsp. baking soda
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 ½ tsp. coarse salt, such as kosher
2 ½ sticks (1 ¼ cups; 10 oz.) unsalted butter, softened
1 ¼ cups (10 oz.) light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. (8 oz.) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 ¼ pounds bittersweet chocolate chips or chunks, preferably about 60% cacao content, such as Ghirardelli
Sea salt or kosher salt for garnishing
Combine flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Whisk well; then set aside.

Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars until very light and fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Reduce the mixer speed to low; then add dry ingredients, and mix until just combined. (Unless you have a plastic guard that sits around the rim of the bowl, this will make a big mess at first, with flour flying everywhere. I found that carefully holding a dish towel around the top of the bowl helped a lot.) Add the chocolate chips, and mix briefly to incorporate. Press plastic wrap against the dough, and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. The dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours.

When you’re ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. Remove the bowl of dough from the refrigerator, and allow it to soften slightly. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat.

Using a standard-size ice cream scoop – mine holds about 3 fluid ounces, or about 1/3 cup – scoop six mounds of dough onto the baking sheet, making sure to space them evenly. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt, and bake until golden brown but still soft, 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then transfer the cookies onto the rack to cool a bit more.
(I don't know if it was the pans we used or the distance from the heat but our best batch cooked for 15 minutes, sat on the pan outside the oven for about 3 minutes and then cooled on the wire rack. I think this portion will mainly take experimentation and also depends on how gooey you like your cookies)

Yield: About 24 (5-inch) cookies.

So yeah... There you have the best chocolate chip cookie recipe, ever. Go ahead and bake them. I dare you not to like them!

If you make these, I would love to know. I want to know what you think of them and if you think they are the best ever like we do!



  1. These look and sound SO amazing!! I will definitely be trying these, my husband and I thank you in advanced for posting this :)

  2. YUM! Love the secrets to great cookies! I need one (or 6) of these in my belly right now!!

  3. WOW!!! Ok, can I say that I had started a page on my blog (since deleted) it was called the chocolate chip cookie search. I was trying to find a cookie recipe that I had in college and ok, these really look like them. I have to try this one!! Thanks!


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