Kelly the Culinarian: My Chocolate Chip Cookie Baking Secrets

Sunday, November 3, 2013

My Chocolate Chip Cookie Baking Secrets

This is a crime against the cookie gods
Inspired by my fail whale of a batch of cookies last week, I was thinking about all the different tips and tricks I've learned for crafting perfect chocolate chip cookies. It all starts, of course, with my famous chocolate chip cookie recipe. When done correctly, it is heavenly and unparalleled anywhere. Just ask around, I'm pretty famous for it. However, I have a few insights after dozens and dozens of batches of this type of cookie to keep your coworkers and friends asking for this recipe. Here are a few tips to making chocolate chip cookies:

Do measure the ingredients carefully. Don't get all cocky and not level the flour or something.
Don't try to swap out fats. Stick with unsalted butter, not coconut oil, olive oil, shortening or bacon grease.
This is what perfect chocolate chip cookies look like
Do mix different types of chocolate. I think a combination of chopped milk chocolate and dark or semi-sweet morsels are the best, but that's just me.
Don't try to add too much chocolate. I experimented with additional milk chocolate and meltfest ensued.
Do freeze the dough in advance. I use a three-Tablespoon scoop to portion out the cookies and freeze them overnight on a baking tray. This makes for puffy cookies, and then it's easy to make a few on the fly.
Frozen babies waiting
 for magic!

Don't omit the salt. Dust the tops of the cookies with Kosher, sea, Himalayan or smoked salt. Skip the table salt always. Salt helps your palette pick up on the sugar in the cookie and brings everything together. Trust me on this one.
Patience is a virtue

Do preheat the oven to the right temperature for at least 20 minutes. Too hot and you'll get brown on the outside, raw on the inside. Too cool and they'll start spreading in the oven.
Don't overcook these cookies. Take them out when they're golden brown and set, but still a little molten. They'll continue to cook after you remove them.
They look a bit undercooked, but are perfect
Do allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for five minutes. This allows the carry-over cooking to happen and everything to set up. Then and only then can you remove them to cool on a baking sheet.
Do make in small batches, mostly so you don't eat them all at once. I'd say a batch of the dough keeps in the freezer for a month, but good luck with trying to hold out a month on eating all these.

What other cookie-baking tips do you have?


Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

Wonderful tips Kelly. I especially love the salt on top.

Zenaida Arroyo said...

Too much work for me! And that is why I just buy my cookies at the store. :-)