Chocolate Chip Cookies

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  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • optional: 1/2 cup shortening
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • optional: 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • optional: 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • optional: 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • optional: 4 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • optional: dash of chili powder
  • 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips
  • optional: peanut butter chips, mint chips, slivered almonds, whatever

On the stovetop, over medium-high heat, melt 1-1/2 sticks unsalted butter. Optionally, only melt one stick of butter and use half a cup of shortening in the bowl.

Brown until golden and with a nutty aroma.

Break the remainder of the butter (half a stick) into pieces in a mixing bowl or, optionally, break up the half cup of shortening into the bowl (shortening leaves the cookies less greasy, but can make cookies grainier and dry).

Pour the melted butter into the unmelted butter, and mix.

Add the brown sugar, white sugar, and vanilla to the melted butter. Optionally, add in heavy cream and vinegar, to make chewier cookies. If making chocolate cookies, use 2 tablespoons sour cream and vinegar instead. Mix.

Add the egg; both whole and extra yolk.

Whisk until smooth (about 30 seconds). Let stand for about 3 minutes, then whisk again for another 30 seconds. Repeat the process of letting the mix stand and then whisking twice more, until the mixture is thick, smooth and shiny.

Add flour, baking soda and kosher salt. If making chocolate cookies, stir in cocoa powder and optional chili powder. Stir in.

Add chocolate chips. Optionally, replace chocolate chips in whole or part with other chips or nuts; slivered almonds go very nice in chocolate cookies. Stir.

Cover bowl and chill in fridge for an hour. You can ignore this step, if you want flatter, crunchier cookies.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, with a rack in the center of the oven.

Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper.

Spoon the dough on, about 3 tablespoons at a time, about 2" apart.

Bake each for 12 to 15 minutes, until golden, still puffy/soft, and edges have begun to set.

Let stand on cookie sheet for another 2 to 3 minutes.

Finish cooling on wire rack.

Serves: about 2 dozen cookies

Preparation time: ~150 minutes