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Chocolate Chip Cookies (NYT 7/09/08)

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marcia2 Jul 17, 2008 04:03 PM

Last week the NYT published a chocolate chip cookie recipe that the claim is the ultimate in amazing chocolate chip cookies. According to them, the 2 key tricks is resting the dough in the refrigerator for 36 hours before baking and making them enormous (large golfball size scoops of dough producing 6" cookies). The size is supposed to yield cookies with a crunchy outer rim, chewy inner ring and soft center. They also advise serving them warm.

For all sorts of reasons having to do with my being on a diet that's actually working and preferring to feed my 6 year old normal sized sweets, I'd rather make standard sized cookies than 6" cookies.

This leads me to 2 questions:

1. Has anyone made them and are they, in fact, the most fabulous thing ever to happen to a chocolate chip cookie?

2. Has anyone made them in a normal cookie size and how did that work out?

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  1. Antilope RE: marcia2 Jul 17, 2008 04:27 PM

    Here's a link to the New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/din...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Antilope
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      marcia2 RE: Antilope Jul 17, 2008 05:51 PM

      Thanks. I have the recipe. I'm just wondering if they are actually incredibly good and if making them smaller would substantially lessen the wonderfulness.

    2. scoopG RE: marcia2 Jul 17, 2008 04:44 PM

      No - four pounds of ingredients and cookies that are 500 calories each!

      http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/16/din...

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        valerie RE: marcia2 Jul 17, 2008 05:54 PM

        2 1/2 sticks of butter? No wonder they're fabulous! Don't think I could bring myself to make them, though.

        1 Reply
        1. re: valerie
          i_eat_a_lot_of_ice_cream RE: valerie Aug 11, 2008 05:20 AM

          When I saw how much butter they called for, the recipe I've been using for years calling for 1 stick of butter seemed very modest!

        2. m
          maisonbistro RE: marcia2 Jul 17, 2008 06:06 PM

          There was a long discussion about these cookies on the Food Media and news board (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/537165). The consensus was that they are indeed fabulous. So, always hoping to improve on my current "best" recipe, I tried them. I made the dough on Tues, baked them today. I didn't want to have huge cookies, as I wanted to "share the love" with as many guinea pigs as I could, so I made them regular cookie size. I baked them for 10 minutes instead of the recommended time and they were beautiful. Believe it or not, I didn't try even one, as I also am on a diet that is working so hence the aforementioned guinea pigs. Whether they are the best cc cookies they had ever tasted I don't know, but they were vewy vewy popular. They look delicious. Tomorrow I will be bringing some to a client, who will actually get to taste both my standard "best cc cookie recipe" and these.

          The use of very high quality chocolate, I am sure, impacts the overall taste, as does the shape of the "chips" - which as the recipe recommends are not chips at all, but disks - so the chocolate is kind of in layers... oozier.

          Hope that helped

          1. p
            P. Punko RE: marcia2 Aug 11, 2008 01:58 AM

            we made them and they were amazing:

            Some things:

            1) we couldn't find the recommended chips, so we went with a mix of some Dagoba 70% Dark Chocolate disks (too dark to use alone) and some Guittard semi-sweet large/flat chips that still fit the recommendation for shape. We also used slightly less than the recommended amount of chocolate, which is quite a bit.

            2) We used cake flour as specified, but regular flour in place of the bread flour.

            3) We made 5-6 inch cookies (5 per sheet)

            4) I think the cooking time was 19:30 minutes (very much in line with specified)

            5) We let cool on the rack for about five minutes, not the 10-15 I think the recipe specified and they were cool enough to eat.

            6) We made one sheet three days in a row. The recipe has a typo I think in how many cookies are supposed to be- you can make 18 from this recipe. The color of the cookies did indeed get darker each time. The difference between 18 hours aging for the dough and 42 was noticeable. I think 66 hours was a little long, but the cookies still were fine.

            They were really wonderful- I think even getting right up to overdone might even improve them- they might get some toastier notes. We cooked them completely through and they were still chewy in an honest way (not just because they weren't cooked).

            3 Replies
            1. re: P. Punko
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              serious RE: P. Punko Aug 11, 2008 04:48 AM

              Do you think that whole wheat bread flour would be too 'rough'??

              1. re: serious
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                P. Punko RE: serious Aug 11, 2008 02:11 PM

                I'm not a flour expert, but my guess is using bread flour would make the cookies even chewier. I was very happy with the mix of cake flour and all-purpose. I wonder about the taste with whole wheat?

              2. re: P. Punko
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                jazzy77 RE: P. Punko Jan 6, 2009 07:24 AM

                Not that I expect the average person would order the chips for the cookies, but you can get the discs mentioned in the article from King Arthur flour: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/d...

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                newfoodie RE: marcia2 Aug 11, 2008 01:44 PM

                I could not resist the call of the Best Chocolate Chip cookies ever and tried the recipe as well.

                For modifications, I used the all purpose flour I had on hand as well as semi sweet chocolate chips (not discs). The recipe made an enormous amount of dough which I suppose makes sense since you are supposed to be making enormous cookies. I made normal size cookies and I think I got about 45 cookies all together (made in several batches). The cookies were still great and I think that the sprinkling of sea salt adds a lot to the recipe.

                All that said, I think next time I would definitely halve the recipe as I have been giving away cookies to everyone I know!

                1 Reply
                1. re: newfoodie
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                  P. Punko RE: newfoodie Aug 11, 2008 02:14 PM

                  I really favor making the big size. We had people over for a lunch and baked 6 cookies fresh for dessert. We then baked 6 the next night, and then six the next. 18 cookies in all. Enough to give away, but enough to savor a wonderful, warm cookie, with all the texture variation discussed in the article.

                2. chowser RE: marcia2 Aug 11, 2008 02:18 PM

                  I made them and they were excellent. The one difference was I shaped them like the Best Recipe's Thick and Chewy cookies--where you make a large ball, break it in half, and stack the two halves so you get a nice texture to them. I wouldn't say they were better than refrigerating the Best Recipe cookie for the same period of time and baking but they still are worth trying.

                  1. s
                    serious RE: marcia2 Aug 18, 2008 06:52 AM

                    I made them with bread flour, but not the whole wheat flour I considered. I didn't get the chocolate discs, chopped very good semi sweet chocoate into 'chips.' I prefer a much more crisp cookie than is produced from this recipe. But the addition of small amount of salt, sprinkled over the cookie before baking was delicious and I will bring this "trick" to next batch of whatever chocolate chip cookies I make in the future.

                    1. k
                      Kagey RE: marcia2 Aug 18, 2008 09:48 AM

                      I've made them twice now. Both times I made them normal cookie size (the better to fight off temptation). And I used the ingredients just like the recipe said, with the bread flour, etc.

                      Since it's so much dough, I tried baking some immediately, then baking some more one and two days later, and freezing the leftover dough. All the cookies turned out good. To be quite honest, though, I couldn't detect a real difference between the first batch and the last, even though the article made a big deal about hydration and whatnot. It's probably just me.

                      I'm not sure why, but my first attempt produced cookies that rose a lot and were kind of puffy. The second produced cookies that were crisp and chewy. Both tasted good.

                      Is it better than the original Toll House? Not sure. You should try it. I may combine the recipes, making the Toll House recipe, but using some bread flour and resting the dough longer. And as others have mentioned, the quality of the chocolate is important. I used three good dark chocolate bars, which I chopped up into chunks. That worked out well.

                      1. JasmineG RE: marcia2 Sep 22, 2008 01:52 PM

                        I made these this weekend, almost exactly according to instructions, though I used chocolate chips instead of disks. They were indeed amazing, and better than my standard cookie recipe (Alton Brown's the Chewy). I don't know if it was the cake flour + bread flour, or the aging (I did 24 hours), but these were really perfect, nicely browned all over, nicely crisp on the outside but with a really chewy inside, and they look just like perfect bakery cookies (the ones that look great but often don't taste as great). Mine were probably slightly smaller than what the recipe wanted, because my baking time was about 16 minutes, and I made just over three dozen, but they were bigger than cookies are when I usually make cookies. I've definitely gotten lots of great feedback on these.

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                          spgayle RE: marcia2 Oct 15, 2008 07:05 AM

                          These cookies are amazing!!!! Letting the dough sit and sprinkling with salt were real taste enhancers. Also, I made them as directed-- enormous-- and found that people just ate less. I think part of the flavor and texture did in fact come from the size. If you just break them down the middle, it will be a fairly normal sized serving and will allow the taster to experience all of the flavors. Let's face it, chocolate chip cookies are fattening. If one is dieting, they either need to pass on them or eat a small piece. Also, this recipe really isn't meant for the average 6 year old. Children will be just as happy with the standard toll house, unless they are chefs of the future. If you are searching for the ultimate chocolate chip recipe, I think this may be it.

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                            gyp7318 RE: marcia2 Jan 5, 2009 11:58 AM

                            I made these cookies over the holiday weekend. I let the dough rest in the fridge for 40 hours. They were quite amazing, had the right hint of chewiness on the outside and a good crumb on the inside.

                            Question-I followed the recipe to the letter, including where it did not state that the 2 1/2 sticks of butter should be room temperature. I creamed the sugars and the butter w/the butter straight out of the fridge and my KitchenAid mixer moaned and groaned but it did finally mix it but wasn't very light. I want to retry the recipe and have the butter softened. Does anyone know if that adversely impacted my cookie? It was still delicious but I'm just curious.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: gyp7318
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                              jenhen2 RE: gyp7318 Jan 5, 2009 12:24 PM

                              I cream butter right from the fridge with sugar in my Kitchenaid all the time. It takes a little longer, but it saves time overall, I think. You just have to be sure you work enough air into the butter - I do mine on med-high speed for about 8 minutes and it's light and fluffy. If yours wasn't light and fluffy, it will definitely impact the texture of your finished baked goods.

                              1. re: jenhen2
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                                dolores RE: jenhen2 Jan 5, 2009 12:42 PM

                                I only changed my best chocolate chip recipe to include letting the dough rest overnight and it made a big difference.

                                On the butter, I let it soften a little and do all the mixing by hand. I never mix by machine anymore.

                            2. Honey Bee RE: marcia2 Jan 5, 2009 01:18 PM

                              This is my standard cookie recipe and I swap out the chocolate to suit my cravings (milk chocolate, toffee bits, whatever). I also change the size of the cookie depending on my needs. I like to bake them as needed, and store the dough in the fridge. It holds up very well for up to a week.
                              Usually, I turn the oven on to preheat while we eat dinner and then pop a few cookies in afterwards. Love the soft texture of the inside.

                              1. g
                                gyp7318 RE: marcia2 Jan 7, 2009 02:35 PM

                                If I were to make the make the dough, roll them into balls, and then freeze them individually, would I need to thaw them before baking them again? Would I change the oven temperature? I've never baked cookies from a frozen dough before. It would be most excellent to be able to bake delicious chocolate chip cookies on demand!

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: gyp7318
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                                  bakerboyz RE: gyp7318 Jan 8, 2009 04:54 AM

                                  You do not have to thaw them nor do you have to change time or temp, put them right on a cookie sheet and bake.

                                  1. re: gyp7318
                                    chowser RE: gyp7318 Jan 8, 2009 10:57 AM

                                    I bake them from frozen but it does take a little extra time, about 1-2 minutes for large cookies.

                                  2. j
                                    jencounter RE: marcia2 Jan 10, 2009 08:41 AM

                                    Only 2 1/2 sticks? Pish posh. My favorite CC cookie recipe (Martha's, who claims it's actually Alexis's) calls for 4 sticks of butter, 3 cups of brown sugar and a cup of white. They're easily the best chocolate chip cookie I've ever had - flat; chewy but also crispy and not at all cakey (hate cakey cc cookies).

                                    That said, this recipe sounds a bit fussy for me. Two kinds of flour for a cookie?

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: jencounter
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                                      dolores RE: jencounter Jan 12, 2009 05:20 AM

                                      A pound of butter? How lovely. I never saw this recipe before. Thanks, jencounter, I can't wait to try them.

                                      I don't bother with two kinds of flour for my cookie, and they're excellent. As I noted, the best hint from this article was refrigerating the dough.

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                                      Ideefixed RE: marcia2 Jan 10, 2009 10:11 AM

                                      I made them and gave them as Christmas presents, with the recipe. Universally loved. I've since done another batch with regular chips, and it's still good, but I wouldn't bother for a 6 year old. (And don't flame me about how little Precious is a budding Bourdain--my husband's a chef and my kids are grown.)

                                      I made one batch smaller, and they weren't really quite as good.

                                      I did quite a bit of Googling, and I got a large charge out of all the bloggers who substituted spelt or applesauce or something and then complained that the recipe didn't work.

                                      And yes, the 2 kinds of flour makes a difference in texture. No pain, no gain.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Ideefixed
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                                        jencounter RE: Ideefixed Jan 11, 2009 08:49 AM

                                        The 'gain' is the real problem here.

                                        1. re: jencounter
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                                          bakerboyz RE: jencounter Jan 12, 2009 04:57 AM

                                          I have been making these for a few months now and they are truly outstanding and, yes, they are appreciably better on the 3rd day. I do subsitute the chocolate, usually using a combination of milk chocolate bits and semi-chocolate chunks. As far as being a fussy recipe, it may have 2 kinds of flour but it only takes me about 10 minutes to make the entire recipe...not what I would consider fussy.

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