Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies


Perfection in a cookie is a matter of individual preference. Personally, I like my cookies thick and chewy.

No cracker cookies for me, no sirree!

So my tips and the recipe below will yield perfectly puffy chocolate chip cookies every single time.



1.) First of all, make sure to properly measure all of your ingredients. Unlike cooking, baking is a very exact science.

Your cookies’ taste and appearance depends on properly measured ingredients. It is also the key to consistency.

The best way to do this is to measure your ingredients by weight. One of my favorite baking tools ever is the EatSmart Precision Pro Digital Kitchen Scale. I use it to measure everything.

I try to add weight (in grams) to each ingredient listed in my recipes, but when I encounter a recipe where the weight isn’t listed, I used this ingredient weight chart to check.

2.) Most recipes call for a mixture of brown sugar and white sugar, but I use ALL brown sugar.

So what makes the sugar brown? Molasses. Brown sugar is essentially white sugar + molasses. Don’t believe me? Check the ingredient list on your bag of brown sugar!

The molasses retains moisture and as a result prevents spreading on the baking – making the cookie thicker.  Also, I personally like the deeper flavor that brown sugar gives the cookie.

3.) My FAVORITE secret ingredient to the perfect chocolate chip cookies is… duh duh duh duhhhhh INSTANT VANILLA PUDDING MIX.

A lot of people add cornstarch to their cookies for extra softness and an added lift. Cornstarch, similar to molasses, retains moisture.

But if you add to much cornstarch, your cookies may have a funky taste.

Well, a package of instant vanilla pudding mix contains cornstarch. So when you add the mix to your recipe, you guaranteed the perfect amount every time.

Also, I think the vanilla in the pudding gives the cookie a deeper flavor.

AND the cookies taste fresh for almost a week with the mix (although they probably won’t last that long).

4.) My final tip for the perfect chocolate chip cookies is chilling the dough.

Chilling the dough allows the ingredients to settle together after the mixing stage.

Also, cookie dough that is refrigerated spreads less. And less spread = thicker cookies!

Additionally, chilling dough gives cookies a more pronounced flavor and it changes the texture. King Arthur Flour wrote an in-depth article on all the benefits of chilled dough.

Cover the dough and chill it for at least one hour. You can also chill it up to three days if you can resist waiting that long!

Once you’re done chilling the dough, pull it out of the refrigerator and let it rest for ten minutes before rolling into balls. That way it’s easier to work with.

And there you have it – my FOUR tips to the perfect chocolate chip cookies! Prepare to be the talk of the town!



Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies
Yield: About 24 cookies

Ingredients
  • 2 and 1/4 cups flour (281.25 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup salted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar (207 grams)
  • 1 (3.4 oz) package instant vanilla pudding
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
Directions
  1. Measure flour and baking soda in medium bowl. Combine and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and brown sugar together.
  3. Add in pudding package and beat until well blended.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla.
  5. Slowly add flour mixture to butter mixture until well incorporated.
  6. Fold in the chocolate chips with a spatula.
  7. Cover the dough and chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
  8. Remove dough from refrigerator.
  9. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  10. Roll dough into balls (the size of 2 tablespoons) and place on greased baking sheet or silicone baking mat.
  11. Bake for 10 minutes.
  12. Remove from oven and allow to cool on cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely. (I recommend setting your timer for 8 minutes and checking at that point to see if they need more time)
  13. Cookies stay fresh in covered container for up to one week.



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