Chocolate chip cookies usually found at almost every bake sale represent the classic all American dessert, however finding the perfect cookie is not so easy. The right balance of chewy to crisp, proportion of chocolate chips and texture are integral to the very best cookie. Everyone has a recipe they swear by, for some it is their grandmother’s old fashion or the Jacque Torre’s salted version. Technique plays an extremely important role in results, recently a NY Times article discussed the role of refrigeration of the dough, temperature of the butter and how the various methods yield the perfect cookie. A few people I know are smitten with the new Cooks Illustrated version which calls for browning butter. My cookie is from Cooks Illustrated their original recipe. I’ve been making this for several years now, learning the nuances of producing what I deem the perfect cookie.
It’s been awhile since I’ve made them, well about a year. Fall leads to more baking, the smell of the cookie infiltrates my apartment, I love how the oven warms the small space. Tonight we were supposed to see a movie, instead I taught my friend Michael how to make the cookies he loves so much. Over the years, he’s eaten many many batches, but this was the first time he helped. Earlier this week we made apple pie, I really enjoy teaching him how to bake, the little nuances such as ratio of flour to add at a time, how long to cook the cookies and keeping your measurements consistent. Sharing something you love is such a joy, funny, it’s different than just cooking or baking for him, bringing him into the process was really fun.
The handwritten recipe pictured above is tried and true for me. A few of my secret tricks, take the cookies out before they are done, just barely, let them sit for a few minutes on the silpat before transferring to the cooling rack. Eggs at room temperature always. And the melted butter, just barely melted, shouldn’t be warm. Sometimes I chill the dough, but usually they go straight from the bowl to the oven. Freshly baked chocolate chip cookies on a Sunday night, perfect.