In pursuit of my “ultimate” recipes a la Mighty Life item #92, I’ve been perusing the interwebs for some time in search of the best chocolate chip cookie. And I mean, not just a good cookie, but the kind where you take a bite and you get a little weak in the knees. This, my friends, is that cookie.
I’ve done the tried and true Nestle back-of-the-bag recipe a number of times. And it’s good, to be sure, but a little flat and a little greasy in my opinion. I’ve tackled the NY Times famed chocolate chip cookie recipe a few times, which includes the rather unorthodox use of a cake/bread flour combination, in addition to a minimum 48 hour rest time in the refrigerator. I really liked the texture of this cookie, but I found the recipe to be somewhat inconsistent, not to mention the annoyance of having to plan your cookie baking two to three days out. Who does that?
Enter the lovely and talented Joy the Baker, who pointed me to the path of chocolate chip cookie enlightenment. Alton Brown’s “The Chewy” chocolate chip cookie (he has “The Thin” and “The Puffy” alternatives in case you were wondering). These cookies are damn good.
A couple of notes regarding the recipe:
Because you begin the recipe with melted butter, it’s important to let the dough chill for a couple of hours. So watch a movie, go for a walk, or work on that novel you’re writing. But don’t rush this process.
Don’t be afraid to pull them out when they look slightly undercooked. The time frame between perfect and over-cooked in this recipe is pretty slim. You can always pop them back in for a few seconds. The saying goes, if they look cooked when you take them out, they will be overcooked.
These cookies are EVEN BETTER THEN NEXT DAY. I love the taste of warm, fresh cookies but something about the texture and flavor really shines after these have sat overnight.
Next time…I’ll get all crazy and add some nuts.
The Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie
Recipe by Alton Brown
2 sticks unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Melt the butter in a heavy-bottom medium saucepan over low heat. (I actually did this in the microwave…just don’t overheat it)
Sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda and set aside.
Pour the melted butter in the mixer’s work bowl. Add the sugar and brown sugar. Cream the butter and sugars on medium speed. Add the egg, yolk, 2 tablespoons milk and vanilla extract and mix until well combined. Slowly incorporate the flour mixture until thoroughly combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Chill the dough for a few hours, then scoop onto parchment-lined baking sheets, 6 cookies per sheet. Bake at 375 F for 14 minutes or until golden brown (mine took about 10 minutes), checking the cookies after 5 minutes. Rotate the baking sheet for even browning. Cool completely and store in an airtight container.