I absolutely love baking, and have done it way before I ever tried cooking (I was scared of turning on the stove for a very long time). Reading recipes and menus has also been one of my hobbies for as long as I can remember. The combination of these two things made me finally try out a chocolate chip cookie recipe that I printed out 2 years ago. The reason for the delay was because the recipe requires patience (refrigerating the dough for 36 hours), and often when I bake, I want to enjoy the fruit of my labor right away.
Now that I've actually made these cookies, I can safely say that patience is most definitely awarded in this case.
Published by The New York Times, adapted from Jacques Torres.
Below is the recipe that includes a few tweaks I made:
2 cups minus 2 tablespoons cake flour
1 2/3 cups bread flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract
1 10 oz bag of bittersweet chocolate disks or chips of at least 60% cacao content (high quality like Ghiradelli's makes a big difference)
1. Mix together both flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Make sure to really mix thoroughly so that even the salt spreads out nicely. Set aside.
2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, approx. 3 to 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add in the vanilla extract. Using the lowest speed, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, a few seconds is sufficient. Add chocolate chips/disks and manually mix with a fork to avoid any breakage and over-mixing. Remove the dough from bowl and wrap directly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 36 hours.
3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Let the dough sit out and soften for around 30 minutes. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray lightly with canola oil.
4. Scoop mounds of dough (around 1/4 measuring cup) onto baking sheet/pan. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake for 13 to 15 minutes (13 was perfect for me). Remove from oven and leave on pan for 3 more minutes, then transfer to a wire rack or plate to cool for 10 minutes. Remaining dough can be used for more batches (I baked these three separate times), or refrigerate again for up to 72 hours. If you still have dough at that point, move to freezer.
Makes 31 3-inch cookies.
A few things about this recipe--
The bread flour in this recipe helps make the cookies nice and chewy. Waiting the 36 hours (or in my case, 34 hours because I had to get to work on time) also helps make the biggest difference in the world. The flavors are so strong after this lengthy time of "seasoning". Make sure not to forget sprinkling sea salt over the dough once everything's on the baking pan.
I am often inclined to make mini sized cookies (around 1.5 inches) because small portions make it easy to grab just one cookie totally guilt-free. It actually is really important to make larger (at least 3 inches) cookies though because otherwise they tend to dry out during the baking process. I was happy that these definitely didn't lack any moisture.
Lastly, I usually always buy semi-sweet chocolate chips for cookies, so it took every ounce of self-control to follow this recipe's instructions to buy bittersweet chocolate chips instead. The result? Amazing. They balance the sweetness of the cookie perfectly.
Go forth. Make these cookies and expect to receive compliments for days.