rye chocolate chunk cookies

When you keep reading how fabulous Tara O'Bradys' chocolate chip cookies are, eventually you have to succumb to temptation and try them yourself.

I'm on a bit of a rye flour craze at the moment so I swapped out some of the plain flour in the recipe for rye flour. I'm also a big fan of pecans so into the cookie dough they went as well.

As this a melt and mix recipe, it takes no time to put together.

I'm a big fan of resting the dough overnight so I scooped out the dough the day before I baked the cookies. I baked half the batch one day and froze the remaining cookie dough to bake another day as we had a morning tea at work later that week.

Here's the recipe for you for Basic, Great Chocolate Chip Cookies - from Seven Spoons by Tara O’Brady (Ten Speed Press).

Makes about 38 cookies

1 cup (225 g) unsalted butter, chopped
3¼ cups (415 g) all-purpose flour
1¼ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1½ teaspoons medium-grain kosher salt
1½ cups (320 g) packed light brown sugar
½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 ounces (340 g) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
75 g coarsely chopped pecans
Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling (optional)

Preheat an oven to 360°F (180°C). Line 2 heavy baking sheets or sheet pans with parchment paper.

In a medium saucepan over the lowest heat possible, melt the butter. There should be no sizzle, crackling, or pops; let the butter ooze into liquid, without boiling, so minimal moisture is lost. Stir regularly, until the butter is almost completely melted. (This is a good time to chop the chocolate.)

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and kosher salt. Set aside.

Pour the melted butter into a large bowl and whisk in the sugars. The mixture may look like it will seize, but it will relax with a few seconds of stirring. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking briskly after each addition, but only to combine. Stir in the vanilla. Use a wooden spoon or silicone spatula to stir in the dry ingredients. Once mostly blended, fold the chocolate and pecans into the dough until the remaining flour is incorporated, and the dough no longer looks dusty. Bring any stray ingredients up from the bottom of the bowl. Do not overmix.

If the dough seems warm or looks overly glossy, refrigerate for 5 minutes. Then roll into balls using 3 tablespoons of dough for each. Arrange on the prepared pans, leaving 3 inches (7.5 cm) in between each. Sprinkle with sea salt if desired. Bake until the tops are cracked and lightly golden, yet the cookies are still soft at the centre, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through cooking. Leave the cookies on the sheet pan for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool. Continue shaping and baking cookies with the remaining dough, making sure to use a cold sheet pan for each batch.

The cookies can be kept at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

If you have the patience, hold the dough in the fridge overnight and for up to a few days before baking, portioned in scoops and covered. Ageing the dough allows for the flour to better absorb the liquids. The flavour will become deeply caramelized and nuanced, and the cookies will have more colour, but slightly less spread. I usually bake one tray for immediate gratification, and keep the rest for later demand.

Thin and Crunchy Variation: For a thinner, crunchy-through-and-through cookie, use 3 cups plus 2 tablespoons (390 g) flour.

Shiny and Crisp Variation: For a shinier cookie with a crisp surface and edge, decrease the brown sugar to 1¼ cups (265 g) packed light brown sugar and increase the granulated sugar to ¾ cup (150 g).

Whole Wheat Variation: Some or all of the all-purpose flour can be replaced with whole wheat or rye. It will, of course, change the texture and look of the finished cookie, but is worthy of a try.

Nutty Variation: This amount of dough can accommodate ¾ cup (75 g) chopped walnuts or pecans.

To make ahead, shape the dough in scoops or logs, wrap tightly, then seal in bags, and keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. Frozen scoops can be baked without defrosting, while logs should be held in the fridge until soft enough to slice. Reduce the oven temperature to 330°F (165°C) and increase the baking time as needed.

I've just eaten the last of these cookies and they were just as good if not better a week later. Mmm, I think I might need to whip up another batch.

Bye for now,


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