Quest for the Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Stack O' Cookies
The Finished Product
The New York Times version of Jacques Torres' Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cookie Dough Tips & Tricks to Mix by was created to satisfy my friends and family alike, that have told me to “just write it down”. Many have mentioned in passing conversation that they are going to bake a batch of cookies. This sets me off on an excited rant about how they can make an extra-ordinary cookie if they follow my tested tricks.

Writing these tips inspired me to re-read the baking articles that first started me on the path to really learning the science (art) of baking from home. But, my quest for the perfect chocolate chip cookie really can’t be over, or even close to it. I can't just settle on the Toll House recipe as being the best one out there. So this weekend I mixed up a batch of the NY Times version of Jacques Torres Chocolate Chip Cookie. I opted for their modified version, only because it makes a smaller batch. Using the Guittard bittersweet chocolate discs I received from being an SF Food Wars participant from Bridge Brands Chocolates I had the one ingredient that would otherwise set me back from whipping up a batch of these famous cookies right away!

One minute after the dough was finished, I did a pre-bake taste test — it passed!

I ate about four cookies worth of dough I think... Then 12 hours later I baked a batch (I couldn't wait the full 36 hours!) Then 48 hours later, I made a few more batches. Even the 12-hour batch was fantastic — full of buttery, chocolaty, salty flavors.

This device, has turned out to be a lifesaver in so many recipes, and helped me to perfectly measure the sugar, and flour for this recipe.


Time: 45 minutes (for 1 6-cookie batch), plus at least 24 hours’ chilling

2 cups minus 2 tablespoons

(8 1/2 ounces) cake flour

1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) 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 (10 ounces) light brown sugar

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract

1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate disks or fèves, at least 60 percent cacao content (see note)

Sea salt.

1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.

2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them. Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours.

3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Set aside.

4. Scoop 6 3 1/2-ounce mounds of dough (the size of generous golf balls) onto baking sheet, making sure to turn horizontally any chocolate pieces that are poking up; it will make for a more attractive cookie. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown but still soft, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day. Eat warm, with a big napkin.

Yield: 1 1/2 dozen 5-inch cookies.

Note: Disks are sold at Jacques Torres Chocolate; Valrhona fèves, oval-shaped chocolate pieces, are at Whole Foods.


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