Chocolate chip cookies come in all shapes and textures: round, craggy, chewy, crunchy, flat, tall and the list goes on. But have you ever stopped to wonder why they ended up that way?
Kenji López-Alt from Serious Eats has painstakingly experimented how each ingredient and environment affect the outcome of a chocolate chip cookie. Turns out that there are a staggering 21 things that a chocolate chip cookie is sensitive to!
Luckily for us, Kenji shares what he found was the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe at the end of his intensive experiment. These brown butter chocolate chip cookies pack an intense nutty, butterscotch flavour and are crisp around the edges, while soft and chewy in the centre. You will also find thin wisps of melted chocolate dispersed throughout the cookies combined with large melty pockets of chocolate.
Brown butter may require more time to prepare, but we assure you that it is worth the effort after you taste the buttery, caramalised flavour it imparts to the cookies.
These brown butter chocolate chip cookies will be responsible for expanding your waistline since 2016.
Makes about 28 cookies
225 grams unsalted butter
1 standard ice cube (approximately 30mL frozen water)
280 grams all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoon kosher salt or 1 teaspoon table salt
140 grams caster sugar
2 large eggs (100 grams)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
140 grams dark brown sugar
225 grams semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped with a knife into 1/2 – 1/4 inch chunks
1. To make brown butter, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Gently swirl the pan continuously until particles begin to turn golden brown and butter smells nutty (approximately 5 minutes). Remove from heat and continue swirling the pan until the butter is a rich brown, about 15 seconds longer. Transfer to a bowl and whisk in the ice cube. Place in the refrigerator and allow to cool completely, about 10-20 minutes. Whisk occasionally so that the butter does not solidify.
2. Meanwhile, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.
3. With a hand or stand mixer, whisk together the sugar, eggs and vanilla extract on medium-high speed until the mixture is pale brownish-yellow and falls off whisk in thick ribbons, about 5 minutes.
4. When brown butter has cooled (it should start to turn opaque and firm around the edges), add it to the egg mixture. Mix on medium speed to until just combined.
5. Add the dry ingredients and mix using a spatula until barely combined, with some of the dry flour still visible. Add in the chocolate and mix until the dry flour is no longer visible. Transfer into an airtight container and refrigerate at least overnight and up to 3 days.
6. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 160℃. Use a 1-ounce cookie scoop to place scoops of cookie dough onto a prepared sheet pan. If you prefer your cookies to have a craggier surface, tear each ball in half and stick them together with the rough sides facing outward.
7. Bake for 13-16 minutes until cookies are golden brown around the edges but still soft.
8. Remove the cookies from the oven and immediately sprinkle lightly with coarse salt. Gently press the salt down to embed. Let it cool for 5 minutes and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.
Recipe adapted from Serious Eats.