Sunday, January 10, 2016

My Chocolate Chip Cookies

By "my" chocolate chip cookies, I mean Rose's, of course.  But they're called "My," not "Rose's" in The Book, so that's what I called them.  I think I'm stalling here to keep from confessing that I don't like chocolate chip cookies.  I've just never seen the charm in them.  When my mother made a batch of them, she'd always make a few without chocolate chips for me.  (With nuts, though, definitely with nuts--still my favorite way to enjoy America's favorite cookie).  But I made Rose's version without nuts and with chips because that's how my favorite grandson likes them.

They're on the Quick and Easy list, and they certainly are easy, although the steps of browning the butter, toasting and skinning the walnuts, and refrigerating the dough probably takes them out of a literal reading of a "quick" category.  (J. Kenji Lopez, whom think of as home cooking's mad scientist) also agrees that chocolate chip cookie dough should be refrigerated overnight to amp up the flavors).

The photo of the browned butter doesn't look as brown as it did in real life, and maybe the brown bits weren't "deep brown," but just regular brown.  My fear of burning the butter always trumps my desire to get that intense color.

This is the mixture of sugar, eggs, vanilla, and the browned butter--weird texture, isn't it?  It looks like some kind of jelly.

But it comes together into a normal-looking, if soft, dough after adding the dry ingredients.  See, it really is easy!   Of course, omitting the walnuts made it even easier, even if it also eliminated the best part of the cookie.

Divide the dough in two pieces, wrap them in plastic, and refrigerate, preferably overnight.

Relatively big pieces of cookie dough are rolled, then flattened.  I weighed the first one, and then tried to make the rest of them feel the same.  I must have come close, because each large piece of dough turned into 10 cookies, just as it was supposed to.

And there they are.  Plain old chocolate chip cookies with no nuts.  I tasted one just to see if I liked them any better than I thought I did.  The answer was yes and no.  I still don't like chocolate chip cookies, but I love the caramely, buttery cookies without the chocolate chips, just as I did when I was six years old.  I thought about it some more and realized that every attempt to make the perfect chocolate chip cookie focuses on the cookie part, not the chip part.  What the experimenters are looking for, I think, is a cookie that will stand up to the overwhelming flavor of pure chocolate.  I love chocolate as much as the next person, but the unsubtle chocolate chip takes over from any competiing flavors.  Now if this dough just had toasted, chopped walnuts in it, I could really go for it.

I'm clearly in the minority here.  These cookies got scarfed up faster than almost anything else I've ever baked.  And I'm willing to bake anything that the little boy in the first picture likes to eat.


  1. Have you ever had them with white chocolate? My favorite Mrs. Field's cookie is her white chocolate with macadamia nuts fresh from the mall kiosk which sadly is no more. I am in agreement with you about the flavor of the batter being the best part. I saw your ghee and almost fainted because mine is so dark. I don't know the dark enough from the burnt crossover point! But your cookies sure look tasty!

    1. I've never had a Mrs. Fields cookie!

    2. vicki,I'll ship you some from my local Mrs fields,these my favorites too.

  2. actually i no longer like the beurre noisette to be too dark either. JJ is more gorgeous even than the cookies. next time save a little batch of dough for you and knead in the walnuts!

  3. i will gladly take any chocolate chip cookies you are given in the future! your grandson is getting cuter and cuter, and looks happy as a lark with that cookie in his hand.

  4. Hi Marie, I look forward to making them, since I love cookies. I couldn't agree more about most of the emphasis being on the cookie itself. If the chocolate is only so-so, then chocolate chip cookie perfection is only half. Your grandson is growing up. He's changing as every week goes by!

  5. like you Marie, i didn't like any chocolate chip cookies, changed my mind after years ago found out that the famous cookie recipe was missing the most important part which is refrigerating over night for extra flavor ..a secret that has been kept for years by chefs...totally a game changer. so good to be back on baking routine.

  6. I love that look small children get in their face when they're just so happy about something. Someone definitely liked your cookies.