As has become our perennial custom this year my daughter and I had to choose what type of cookie to make for that emblematic event which takes place on Dec. 25th. Being somewhat short on time I decided to simply ask my daughter what she would like to make. She went with the classic, chocolate chip, which is only odd because she doesn’t like chocolate chip cookies? Any-who after searching through my customary sources for wondrous treats I realized there are literally 8 trillion claims of “The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie”. Come on people this recipe does not vary significantly enough to warrant someone claiming one is better than the other. In any case I settled on the following because quite frankly it was the most straight forward.
the very best chocolate chip cookie recipe ever
Recipe courtesy of: everybodylikessandwiches.com
(adapted from Not Without Salt)
1 c butter, room temperature
1/2 c white sugar
1 3/4 c light brown sugar, packed
2 t vanilla
3 1/2 c all purpose flour
1 1/2 t baking soda
3/4 t salt
2 c semi sweet or bitter sweet chocolate chips
1/2 c sliced almonds (optional – if not using, replace with chocolate chips)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt or fleur de sel (optional), for sprinkling
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add one egg at a time, blending well before adding in the second egg. Add in vanilla and mix until incorporated. Slowly add the flour mixture. Mix until just combined, taking care not to over mix. With a spatula fold in the chocolate and the almonds (if using).
Using a tablespoon, roll into balls and place onto a prepared cookie sheet, about an inch and a half apart (I always line mine with silpat or parchment paper). Slightly flatten out the tops. If desired, sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt or fleur de sel.
Bake at 360F for 12 minutes until lightly golden but still a bit gooey on the inside. Cool on wire racks.
While I realize the claim of the recipe I chose, please understand, this is not the reason I chose it. Quite literally the ingredients were straight forward and really rely more so on the cooking technique to make them delectable. While the recipe is simple there are a few critical steps not to be missed. First, make sure the flour and chips are folded into the batter. As soon as I was ready to incorporate the flour I removed it from the machine and folded it and the chips at the same time into the wet ingredients. This ensured the avoidance of over mixture which will make them hard as rocks. Second, Do not I repeat, do not skip flattening slightly once the dough is on your cookie sheet and sprinkling with salt! Some of you will contort your faces at adding salt to a dessert, don’t. Remember salt enhances flavors, and in this case it does a masterful job! I did not have any fleur de sel, but kosher salt is a nice substitute. I used a melon scooper for the dough and found it to be quite useful, also it helped limit the size of the cookies thereby helping with the cooking time and the yield, which in this case turned out to be very important! I already knew I would be shorting the time and temp on these and had a plan, after the first small batch I adjusted both and ended up with a 300F for 8 minutes, not 1 second longer! They come out of the oven a little pale and soft but if you immediately place them on a cooling rack they will be utterly perfect. UH OH, I think I just claimed these are the perfect chocolate chip cookie! All I can say is my daughter had one and commented “that is the best cookie I’ve ever had”! Best thing is she can honestly say she helped to make them. I think Santa will be the big winner this year in swooning on our cookies. I am sure he will be appreciative.
Happy Holidays to All!