There are chocolate chip cookies, and then there are these extraordinary chocolate chip cookies.
Soft and chewy, the key to this recipe is the melted butter. You’ll notice that most cookie recipes call for softened butter to be creamed with the sugar, but for this giant cookie recipe, melted butter is the way to go.
According to Baking Illustrated (America’s Test Kitchen, 2004), “When butter is melted, the fat and water molecules separate. When melted butter is added to the dough, the proteins in the flour immediately grab onto the freed water molecules to form elastic strands of gluten. The gluten makes a cookie chewy.”
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste or extract
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
Adjust two oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions. Heat oven to 325°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
In large bowl, combine butter and sugars with electric mixer on medium speed, beating for at least 3 minutes, or until sugar is no longer grainy. Beat in egg, egg yolk and vanilla bean paste until thoroughly combined, about 1 minute.
Add dry ingredients all at once and beat on low speed until just combined. Using large rubber spatula, give batter a good stir to make sure all dry ingredients are fully incorporated. Stir in chocolate and peanut butter chips. Refrigerate dough in bowl for 15 to 20 minutes, until well-chilled.
Using a 1/4-cup measuring cup (ideally stainless steel), scoop out dough to scant 1/4 cup (any more than 1/4 cup makes cookies too big and floppy). Tap out dough into hand and tear in half. Press two flat sides together, with torn edges facing up. Make sure cookie halves are stuck together, but don’t smooth them. Place 6 cookies, evenly spaced, on prepared baking sheets. Return unused dough to refrigerator between batches.
Bake for 17 minutes, rotating sheets upper to lower, front to back, halfway through baking time. Cool for 20 minutes on baking sheets before removing to wire racks to cool completely. Yields 18 cookies.
Note: To make double-chocolate chip cookies, substitute 1/3 cup Dutch process cocoa powder for equal part of flour, and substitute 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips for the peanut butter chips.
For white-chocolate macadamia cookies, substitute 1 cup white chocolate chips for the bittersweet chocolate chips, and substitute 1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts for the peanut butter chips.
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