So, it’s kind of awkward to admit, but i just can’t find the right chocolate chip cookie recipe. I bake a lot. Everything from home made breads and challahs to beautiful birthday cakes - but i just dont seem to have the touch when it comes to chocolate chip cookies! They always spread too much and turn out gigantic, and are either too chewy or over crispy and nothing like the photos on the recipe. Can any one recommend a good reliable recipe? You will have my eternal gratitude
That’s the right spirit! Cookies aren’t a healthful food item no matter if it contains butter or shortening, so I don’t worry about such things. If I’m going to enjoy a cookie, it’s going to contain whatever ingredients it needs to produce the optimal experience. What this means in reality is that I don’t eat cookies! When I make them, I might sample one or two to see if the recipe came out right, but then I give them away. :-( I have run a mile to burn off one cookie, and it’s just not worth it.
I feel exactly the same! And whenever i bake something (cookies, cakes, whatever), my husband makes me take it to work, so we won’t get tempted at home…
Actually, I am in the midst of a chocolate-chip-cookie craze right now. I have been baking many recipes lately, and many of them turn out like the picture [if there is a picture]. Mostly, the ones that don’t look like the ones in the picture are the ones that aren’t specific enough- e.g. how many minutes to mix the ingredients; how big of a scoop to use etc.
The ones that impressed me most are Alexis Stewart’s Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies [Just don’t preheat the oven as the recipes states right at the beginningl there is a short chilling period]; America’s Test Kitchen’s Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie [I got the recipe with their app. It’s a little time consuming, but really delicious] and Nigella Lawson’s recipe which is my current go-to.
Edit: Oh, in Alexis Stewart’s recipe, I added about 1/2 cup more flour, so that it would look like the one in Martha’s site [there is a video on the site].
In my very first attempts of making chocolate chip cookies, I simply followed the recipe on the Nestle chocolate chip bag, and I was expecting thick, chewy cookies. I used Gold Medal AP flour and whipped up a batch of the batter and used/baked it immediately. What I got were sad, flat cookies that spread across the whole baking sheet.
I then read in Shirley Corriher’s Bakewise about the importance of gluten in limiting the spread of the cookies. I switched to King Arthur AP flour, which has a higher protein content (11.7% +/- 0.2%) than Gold Medal (~10.5%). I also chilled the dough for 36 hours, which allows time for moisture to be absorbed by the flour, leading to a drier dough that spreads less. With this and the higher protein flour, I got plump, thick cookies.
The cookies are delicious fresh out of the oven, but they don’t really retain the chewiness upon standing. They become kind of hard after cooling. I use dark brown sugar, so it is supposed to help retain moisture. I’m thinking I shouldn’t cool the cookies on a cooling rack, but cool them on a tray, so that they will dry less. I’m also trying a batter made with melted butter rather than creaming softened butter. The released water from the melted butter should help develop more gluten and make a chewier cookie. I’ll have to see how this batch turns out.
Chow.com’s “You’re Doing It All Wrong” series features a video on chocolate chip cookies. There are some good tips.
The batter would be ok unrefrigerated for a short time if you need to transport it. However, I wouldn’t leave any cookie dough unrefrigerated for too long as there is raw egg and it may spoil. You could also get away with refrigerating for 24 hours, but the longer it sits, the better.
I basically use the Nestle recipe but with King Arthur flour, dark brown sugar instead of light, and resting the dough for 36 hours. I have recently made a batch with melted butter, but I haven’t baked those yet so I don’t know how they will turn out. I hope more chewy! I’ve also found most chocolate chip cookies too sweet for my liking—and of course it would be if I’m using dark brown sugar. I need the dark brown sugar, however, to make the cookies moist, so I think I may try using a very bitter chocolate instead of the usual semisweet chips. Hope that the bitter chocolate will offset the sweet cookie.
You could try ATK “Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie”. It’s very chewy, though a bit too sweet for my liking. There is a very pronounced toffee flavor, unlike any other cookie I have ever eaten.
and you could experiment with adding some molasses- it is very often added to retain chewiness.
Edit: Sorry, ATK= America’s test kitchen. Maybe it was published earlier under “Cook’s Illustrated”
When I was a young man I used to bring Nestles Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies to work on special occasions. The old ladies used to say they really liked my cookies but could not duplicate them. I kept saying that truthfully, I just used the recipe on the back of Nestles Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips.
I thought the old ladies were just just trying to say something nice to me, but one wise old bird had a long talk with me and asked me to explain everythin I did, step by step.
As I explained everything to her, we discovered I had been mistakenly using only 2 cups of flour when the recipe calls for 2 1/4 cups of flour! The nice old bird smiled triumphantly and if she is still alive today she must be in her 80’s.
This slight difference made the cookies a little more like candy than cookies.
I find the majority of chocolate chip cookies to be quite similar in ingredients and quantities. The first thing you need to do is use quality ingredients. Use real butter, not fake fat spread full of hydrogenated nonsense and other man made chemicals. The next thing is to consider the weather, as silly as that may sound. If it is hot and dry out or wet and cool out, the results of my baking will vary greatly even though it is my recipe that I’ve used a hundred times. Also, the way you handle ingredients will affect the results. See my blog post on 10 tips for good cookies: http://thebakingbarnstore.com/10-tips-for-good-cookies/
Good luck on perfecting your chocolate chip cookie!