The Great Chocolate Chip Cookie Experiment

Apple pie is often cited as the quintessential American dessert.  I guess the imagery works, but we all know that chocolate chip cookies are really the most popular.  We eat them from childhood through adulthood and I would be willing to wager that a lot of people who would never consider themselves bakers (expert, amateur or otherwise) have attempted a chocolate chip cookie.  If I was on the proverbial desert island and allowed only one dessert it would be a toss-up between a chocolate malt and chocolate chip cookies.

I grew up on Toll House which my mom made really well.  But I have tried lots of different recipes.  I am always looking for the perfect one.  Well, the New York Times had an article on the ultimate chocolate chip cookie recipe last week.  Apparently, one of the big secrets to a fabulous cookie is to let the dough rest in the fridge.  For a long time.  Yeah, right.  Cuz I always plan ahead for chocolate chip cookies.  Please.  it’s a victory if I don’t burn my mouth on a hot chip.

But I was curious.  I really wanted to try the recipe from the paper which is the culmination of their “research.”  Unfortunately, I didn’t have any cake flour and bread flour on hand and the recipe calls for both.  Next weekend!  I decided to test the resting theory with a recipe (below) I use fairly often.  For their research they tested the dough immediately, at 12 hours, 24 hours and 36 hours and, sure enough, 36 hours was the best.  For the particulars about the resting period check out the article.

I don’t have time (or the available calories) for quite so much testing.  So, the kids and I tested immediately.  Duh.  If your kids see you making chocolate chip cookie dough, you had best be ready to get some in the oven.

The first batch.  One of the other tips was to make them big.

They were good.  You can’t go wrong with a warm cookie from the oven.

We tried the second batch about 30 hours later.  I couldn’t time it exactly right for 36.  I am in bed at 1:00am.  The dough was much drier out of the fridge.  But…

yum!  I don’t know if it was the power of suggestion but the cookies did seem to taste better.  Moister even.  I can’t wait to try with the other recipe next week!

The cookies side by side.  The one on the right is the later batch.  It is more crinkly and a little darker…which is completely unnoticeable in this fine picture.

Chocolate Chip Cookies – I have seen this recipe in many different places and wouldn’t know who to credit…

1 cup butter 
2 cups flour 
1 tsp. baking soda 
1 cup granulated sugar 
1 cup brown sugar
2.5 cups blended oatmeal (measure oatmeal and blend in blender to a fine powder) 
12 oz. chocolate chips
1 tsp. salt
4 oz. grated milk chocolate bar 
2 eggs 
1 tsp. baking powder 
1 tsp. vanilla
Cream the butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla; mix together with flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder, and soda. Add chocolate chips and milk chocolate. Roll into almost golf ball size balls and place two inches apart on a cookie sheet.  Bake for 14-16 minutes at 350 degrees.

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2 responses to “The Great Chocolate Chip Cookie Experiment

  1. I saw the same article and was going to do the test too! I was hesitant because I would have freshly baked cookies 3 days in a row.. imagine the snacking!

    By the way, I get a little freaked out when baking cookies that have been refrigerated.. do you have to wait for the batter to get to room temperature or bake them as they are. I know most people have problems with spreading, but I usually have problems with too much rise and no spreading and I have to flatten my cookies. My go-to recipe is from cook’s illustrated by the way.. the thick and chewy.

  2. Pingback: TWD: Plain Ol’ Pudding « Baking with the Boys

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