Thursday, January 20, 2011

Testing America's Test Kitchen

There is something about January that makes me want to eat chocolate chip cookies nonstop. Last January I tried several recipe variations and posted the results.

I love watching America's Test Kitchen. The other night they were testing chocolate chip cookie recipes. I decided to try out their recipe and it was delicious. I love hearing the explanations of why ingredients and methods do what they do. And I love that my cookies turned out exactly like the ones they made on the show. They still flattened out quite a bit, but that's the sacrifice you make for butter. Their winning recipe and method took a little extra time. They browned their butter (always a good thing) and then waited 10 minutes to really let the sugars dissolve. They turned out just slightly crispy on the edges and extra chewy on the inside. I also used their recommended chocolate chip, Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate chips.




(These photos were taken right out of the oven. They flattened a little more.)

Go here to see the full recipe with explanations.

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients
  • 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (8 3/4 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 14 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 3/4 sticks)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
  • 3/4 cups packed dark brown sugar (5 1/4 ounces) (see note)
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips or chunks (see note)
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted (optional)
Instructions
  • 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 bowl; 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 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.

2 comments:

  1. rob made these last night and they were not flat, but they were huge and DELICIOUS!! they were like a levain cookie. soo good.

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  2. This really looks delicious. I'm definitely craving for a plate of that right now. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. This is definitely a must do recipe this weekend since I got my Food Safety Certification.

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