Sunday, May 2, 2010

Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies with Sea Salt


Whoo Hoo! Another new chocolate chip cookie recipe. This is a good one. It's thick. Not chewy. More cakey like. The edges are not crispy. The bottoms are nicely browned. I cut back a little on the salt that I mixed into the batter so I could sprinkle a bit of sea salt on top of each cookie. Wow, what a flavor changer! It's good! The sea salt I used on top was an inexpensive one from Trader Joes. You can leave out the sprinkle of sea salt if you want. It was just an experiment for me. Everywhere you look nowdays, there is sea salt sprinkled on some dessert. You can use any kind of chocolate chips that you want in this recipe, or even cut up chocolate bars. I used half milk chocolate & half semi sweet Guittard chocolate chips. This time I sifted all of my dry ingredients, which I usually don't do for my chocolate chip cookies, and the texture was smoother and not so uneven. I included a different baking method below that I often use for chocolate chip cookies. If you want to bake & eat your cookies right after making the dough, then the method won't work because it includes freezing the dough. But I suggest trying it sometime. Some of my favorite chocolate chips cookies have been made using this method. See the description below the recipe at the end of this post.











Chocolate Chip Cookies sprinkled with sea salt

Ingredients:
  • 3 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. of salt
  • 1/2 tsp. of baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 cup of butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup of tightly packed light brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup of granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cup chocolate chips

Method:

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

In a larger bowl, beat the butter and sugars together on medium speed until light and fluffy. On low speed, slowly add the eggs and vanilla extract. Beat to combine, scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Add the flour mixture and beat just until there are no more streaks of flour. Stir in the chocolate chips by hand. Cover and refrigerate for an hour or more.

Preheat the oven to 330.

Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop out well rounded tablespoonfuls of the dough and roll them into balls. Leave about 2 inches between each ball. Bake for 8-9 minutes or until the bottom edges are lightly golden. If you prefer crispier cookies increase the baking time by 1-2 minutes.

Another method that I often use:

After completely mixing the cookie dough, line a cake pan with plastic wrap. (I doubled this recipe and used a 13x9 inch cake pan. So for a single recipe you could use a 9x9 inch square brownie pan). I use 2 very long strips of plastic wrap (I have a large commercial kitchen size plastic wrap from Costco so my strips are very wide. You might need to lay 2 strips side by side if you are using the regular size rolls from the stores). One length wise & one up & down with about 6-8 inches overhang on each side. I smooth out the plastic wrap so there are not a lot of wrinkles that could get caught in the soft cookie dough. I dump all of the cookie dough in the pan, cover it with each overhang of plastic wrap till it's completely covered and press down evenly and firmly. I happen to have two 13x9 inch pans so I place the other empty pan on top and that makes a nice even surface to really press on. I really press hard so the cookie dough in the pan is super compact. After I have pressed the dough down, just to make sure the plastic wrap did not get caught in the soft dough, I lift each overhang of plastic wrap off the dough and then lightly lay it back down, again to completely cover the dough. Place in freezer for several hours, or overnight or for a few days. After it's frozen, uncover the top of the dough, flip it upside down onto a cutting surface and peel away all the plastic wrap. Some of it might have gotten caught in the dough so peel slowly so it doesn't rip. Occasionally it does get caught and it might take a couple of extra minutes to completely remove all the plastic wrap. Take a large knife and cut the frozen dough into chunks. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet and bake. You will need to bake longer since dough is frozen & so compact. I cut all of my pan of dough into even chunks at once and then place back in freezer. I grab enough chunks to fill a cookie sheet right before I slide them into the oven.

I really really like this method of baking cookies. I observed the employees at Specialtys bakery doing a similar method. I went home & tried it and loved the results. The cookie dough is so compact and results in a dense thick cookie. Try it!