Chocolate chip cookies are always a great favourite and probably one of the first things many of us learned to bake. There are countless recipes for the cookies, but let’s talk about a few key steps and ingredients to make the perfect cookie dough and give them that extra flavour.
The main ingredients that affect the final result are butter, sugar and eggs. The most important thing is to chill the dough for at least 24 hours before shaping the cookies, so that the dry ingredients get to properly soak up all the wet ingredients and result in chewy and thick cookies – rather than flat ones with burned brown edges! Also, ageing the dough yields more complex flavour in the final cookie.
I’ve made chocolate chip cookies numerous times, but this recipe with the combination of ingredients is my current favourite. For me, the best cookies are the one with a slightly soft middle and crispy edges. The more butter you use, the more the cookies will spread during baking and will end up being softer. You can cream the butter or melt it and add to the dry ingredients. If you want to use melted butter, I suggest browning it slowly on a low heat. It will have a nuttier flavour that enhances the overall taste of the cookies.
Here are a few more tips:
- Make sure you don’t overwork the dough. The more you mix and work the dough after adding the flour, the more gluten is formed, which can result in cookies that are tough and hard.
- Thoroughly mix in the chocolate chips without overworking the dough: gently fold the chips into the dough with a scooping motion until they’re evenly distributed.
- When your balls of cookie dough are different sizes, your cookies will bake at different speeds – so rather than shaping by hand, use a cookie scoop or a tablespoon measure to shape evenly sized balls of dough.
- The cookies need space to spread during cooking. Place the uncooked dough balls about 2 inches apart.
- Always add vanilla as it enhances other flavours.
- Always add a sprinkle of sea salt. Sweet and salty are opposites that definitely attract. Like vanilla, salt enhances flavour, but it also cuts sweetness.
- To add to the flavour, use brown sugar instead of regular white sugar.
Recipe (makes 30 cookies)
- 225 g unsalted butter
- 285 g all purpose flour
- ¾ tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 200 g brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 220 g dark chocolate
- Melt the butter on low heat until browned.
- Mix eggs, sugar and vanilla. Combine flour with salt and baking soda and sift.
- Add melted butter to the egg mixture. Then add the flour mixture with a spatula. Finally add chopped chocolate and combine. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours.
- The next day, take pieces of the dough using spoon and place them onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 180 C.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes. Let cool and serve.