Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Classic Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Not sure how it’s possible, but in the three years I’ve been doing this blog, I’ve only made chocolate chip cookies twice. Once I made Chocolate Marble Chunk Cookies, one of my favorite recipes, and another time I featured Monster Chocolate Chunk Macadamia Nut 

Cookies. But never have I made regular old chocolate chippers (or, in this case, chunkers). It’s interesting to me how different these cookies will turn out by employing only slight variations in technique or in the original Toll House recipe. In this version, for 

example, I chilled the dough overnight and then scooped it out using a 1 ½-ounce scoop. This made for thick, soft cookies as opposed to thin, crisp ones. Not chilling the dough and cutting down the flour by 1 to 2 tablespoons will make for a thinner, 

crisper cookie, if that’s your preference (I am not firmly in either camp; I love both, depending chiefly on what’s within easy reach). For a super-soft cookie, you can use melted instead of softened butter. I like these cookies because they have some bulk, but I also 

appreciate the merits of  a thinner, crisper cookie. I like to use Guittard chocolate pistoles in the dough, because they are the ideal sized chunks, and they produce a nice clean cookie because you don’t have those tiny shards of chocolate you get from chopping the chocolate. And, because I love pecans, I added some of those, too. To have freshly baked cookies at the ready, shape the dough into a log, wrap it well and freeze. Then simply slice off pieces of dough and bake cookies whenever you get that urge we all know so well…

Classic Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Makes about 16 large cookies

2 cups (256 g) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
12 tablespoons (170 g) unsalted butter
¾ cup (162 g) firmly packed dark brown sugar
½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
10 ounces (283 g) bittersweet chocolate pistoles or chunks
1 cup (100 g) pecan halves, toasted

1. Sift together flour, baking powder and baking soda into a bowl. Add the kosher salt and whisk to combine. Set aside.
2. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars together until very light, about 4 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla, mixing at medium speed until well blended. Reduce the speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Add chocolate and pecans and mix at low speed just until combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 12 hours (or up to 3 days).
3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Using a 1 ½-ounce ice cream scoop, scoop mounds of dough onto the baking sheet, spacing them 2 ½ inches apart. Press the mounds down slightly and bake until golden brown but still soft, 13 to 15 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes, then transfer cookies to another rack and cool completely, if you can wait that long.

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