Food and music have always been paramount to my life. As a young, bubbly 5-year-old, I found special meaning in the song that incorporated both: “Cookies” by Eric Clapton.
Oh, you haven’t heard of it? It goes:
“If you wanna hang out you’ve got to take ‘em out; cookies.
If you wanna get down, down on the playground; cookies.
She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie; cookies.”
Alright, perhaps this was either my parental filter or my own naïve mind making a better lyrical alternative to the classic song, but either way the message still rings true: everyone loves cookies, no lie.
Whether it’s a sleepover, ‘hang out’, get-together, welcoming gift, or yummy snack, cookies are never unwelcome. The trouble is choice. How many times have you had an absolutely disgusting cookie? The problem is that there are just SO many delicious cookies out there. When it comes down to it, one cannot be led astray with the classic chocolate chip cookie. The gooey batter and rich chocolate chips are what have brought smiles to faces throughout the years. But, as always, you can make it better!
This time I wanted them soft batch without just under cooking them; chewier than the regular crisp cookies you get from “break and bake” packages. So I turned to Alton Brown’s recipe, adding a few alterations. It was a winner – definitely soft and chewy. I attribute that to the use of bread flour, which is higher in gluten. It is known as “hard flour” and is used to get the lofty, chewy, fluffiness of baked breads, and in this case, cookies. However, the real difference between all-purpose and bread flour is slight if you are cooking on a budget. Especially if you are just making cookies, you can and should go for the all-purpose flour because a bag o’ bread flour can set you back a few bucks.
But if you’ve got some around, it’s worth the experiment. The taste isn’t necessarily better or different per say, but the texture definitely is.
Chewy Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies [Original: Alton Brown]
2 sticks unsalted butter
2 ¼ c bread flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
¼ c white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg yolk
2 T milk
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1 bag of dark chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 375˚ F.
2. Sift all dry ingredients.
3. Mix dry ingredients with the butter [melted, in microwave or on stove], eggs, milk and vanilla until thoroughly combined. Add chocolate chips.
4. Chill the dough for about 15 min.
5. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or wax paper. Scoop cookies onto sheet, separate at least 1 inch apart.
6. Bake for about 10 min; rotate the baking sheet after about 5 min to get even browning.
7. Cool and store in airtight container.
Makes about 2 dozen cookies, depending on how much dough you end up eating along the way...