Suzi's Blog

Sweet Chic Chocolate Chip Cookies

Drop cookies come in two forms: rustic and perfectly shaped. Rustic means you drop the dough by tablespoons onto the cookies sheet. The dough plops, the shape is sort of round, you mess with the shape with your fingers, and the cookies bake in that nice but not perfect format. The benefit here is you get to lick your fingers.

Or there is the perfectly shaped cookie, the ones you buy at the market, the ones that are too perfectly round. The dough slopes down to the edge of the exact circle that the dough was stamped out. It’s automated and that takes perfection to an artificial level,

How about round, naturally perfect and, on top of it all, delicious chocolate chip cookies?

In Tribeca, a couple of blocks from me, there was a lighting store. The easy place to go for bulbs and switches and all the little things you need when your building was built in 1860. It’s tough to find some of those missing parts. The lighting store closed a couple of years ago and I regretted seeing it depart. I asked them in their last week what was going into that space. “Maybe some kind of bakery,” they said.

I hid my delight. I held my hopes. I was rewarded. The light bulbs may be gone, but the cupcakes are here, and the cookies. And the frosting shooters, although I have told Suzen that I have never, ever eaten one of those.

Tribeca Treats is at 94 Reade Street, just west of Church and before West Broadway. It’s the best bakery in Tribeca. And the owner, Rachel Thebault, is about to publish her new book: Sweet Chic. Here’s her very good chocolate chip recipe that lets you form perfect circles. How? Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, chill for an hour. The chilled dough works wonderfully, nicely rolling into balls that gracefully warm and flatten in the oven. Using mini chocolate chips and no nuts means that dough can uniformly flow into those pretty bites you crave. The proportions of ingredients here give you a crisp cookie. Ones you can dunk in milk or just snap away at.

Sweet Chic will be published on October 26, 2010. I know the quality of Tribeca Treats and I’m sure you will love every recipe in the book. I just may have my first official frosting shooter.

Sweet Chick Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield: about 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter
  • ⅓ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup granulate sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup mini semisweet chocolate chips

Preparation:

Sift the flour, baking soda and slat into a mixing bowl and set aside.

Beat the butter on the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment at high speed until it is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Add the sugars, crumbling the brown sugar with your hands as you add it to get rid of any lumps. Mix on medium =-high speed until smooch, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula halfway through mixing to ensure that the butter and sugar well mixed.

Add the egg and vanilla and mix until combined Again, scrape down the sides and bottom of the blow to make sure that the ingredients are incorporated.

Add approximately half the flour mixture and mix on low speed just until the flour is incorporated, about 30 seconds. Repeat with the remaining flour and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure that the flour is fully incorporated.

Stir in the chocolate chips and mix just until combined, about 10 seconds. Remove the dough from the blow, press it into a flat mound and wrap it in plastic wrap. Let it chill fin the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or up to 3 days.

While the dough is chilling, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper or spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray.

Remove the chilled dough from the refrigerator and scoop or roil it into balls about 1 tablespoon in size. At this point, the cookie dough can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 1 month (separate layers of dough balls with waxed paper).

Place the balls of dough about 1 inch apart on the prepared pans. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, rotating the pans once halfway through, until the edges of the cookies are golden born. Remove the cookies from the oven, let them cool slight, then transfer them a wire rack to cool to room temperature. Or serve warm

Keep the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.

Source: Sweet Chic by Rachel Thebault

Worlds Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

How many times have you made chocolate chip cookies?  Honestly?  Yes, you have to start counting from childhood, when you tugged on Mom’s apron and got one big serious lick of cookie dough.  That’s when our common addiction started.  Long after Mom is gone, that craving for dough, for the smell of baking cookies and, of course, that taste of a warm cookie out of the oven will awaken memories deep inside.

The Good CookieTo be honest, that recipe on the back of the package of chocolate chips is good.  It really is.  As time has gone by, whole books have been created about chocolate  chip cookies.  I’ve blogged about one of those books [http://www.cookingbythebook.com/blog/cookbook-reviews/essential-chocolate-chip-cookbook-elinor-klivans/].

So, truly sans ego, I am going to claim that I am chocolate chip cookie expert.  And that is why I can say with great confidence that I have found the world’s very, very best chocolate chip cookie recipe.  It’s from Tish Boyle in her book The Good Cookie.  The recipe is below and I will tell you her key secret: use melted butter.  Oh, and you make them big.

Suzen and I have made these a dozen times now, tested them on friends and family.  The first response is always something like, “Oh, my God, ..”  Quickly followed by, “Can I have the recipe?  Is it a big family secret.”

I am happy to share Tish’s extraordinary recipe here.

Funny thing, I found this recipe by accident.  The book was published in 2002 and I have been using it for years.  There is a colorful forest of Post-it notes sticking out all over the place — and I will blog in the future on more of those recipes.

But I just found the chocolate chip recipe.  I am embarrassed to say, it is the very first recipe in the book.  I usually just pick up a book and start flipping pages somewhere.  I rarely start at the beginning, with that first recipe.  If I had with The Good Cookie, then for eight years I could have been savoring this masterpiece recipe.

Please, don’t wait eight years.  Give this one a try and let me know how you love it.

 

Soft-Baked Chocolate Chunk Cookies

 

Yield: 18 Cookies

2 ½                  Cups sifted all-purpose flour

1/2                   Teaspoon baking soda

1/8                   Teaspoon salt

3/4                   Cup melted butter [1 ½ sticks]

1                      Cup firmly packed light brown sugar

½                     Cup granulated sugar

2                      Large eggs

2                      Teaspoons vanilla extract

10                    Ounces chocolate cut into ¼-inch pieces

                        [The chocolate can be bittersweet, semi, or milk]

¾                     Cup pecans, chopped

 

Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

 In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking, soda and salt.  Set aside.

 In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter and sugars.  Whisk in the eggs one at a time, whisking until well blended.  Whisk in the vanilla.  Using a wooden spoon, stir in the dry ingredients until combined.  Stir in the chocolate and nuts.  [The dough can be refrigerated, well wrapped, for up to 4 days or frozen for up to a month].

 Using a ¼ cup measure or ice cream scoop, drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 2 inches apart.  Bake, two sheets at a time for 15 to 18 minutes, until the cookies are just brown around the edges; switch the position of the sheets halfway through the baking.  The centers of the cookies should be soft and slightly puffy.  Let look completely the on the backing sheets or wire racks.

 Store in an airtight container for up to 2 days [which would be a miracle].

 Source: The Good Cookie by Tish Boyle