November 29, 2009

New York Times chocolate chip cookies

I know it is time for holiday baking, but I for one am not quite ready yet.  I had a craving a week or so back for classic chocolate chip cookies.  Browsing as many food blogs as I do, I’ve seen the New York Times recipe mentioned and varied many times.  This recipe is based on the genius of Jacques Torres.  My favorite touch is the sprinkle of sea salt before baking – it really makes a great difference!

Also, the recipe insists on letting the dough chill and rest in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours (the article says 36 hours is even better).  This might seem annoying, but I’m a convert after making these.  It really does let the flavor develop and the consistency is also distinctive.

Personally, I like chocolate chips cookies that are fairly crisp and thin, not the heavy cake-like texture which is what some recipes really go for.  The ingredients are almost always the same in a chocolate chip cookie recipe, but slight differences determine the final results.  This recipe gives you a good chocolate to cookie ratio and also yields a thin, crisp yet gooey in the middle cookie.  The results are a classic and scrumptious treat.

Of course, they are best served warm!

I highly recommend reading the article that accompanies the recipe as it talks about the pursuit of writing the perfect recipe and also has additional insight into the methods and ingredients used.

Adapted from Jacques Torres

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
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.


  1. I always enjoy seeing different bloggers response on the NY times cookie recipe - partly because they always look so delicious, like these. Still haven't made them myself, yet am severely tempted as my kind of chocolate chip cookie is exactly like this one described!

  2. Lucy: you won't be disappointed if you use this recipe and follow it to a T. We still have a little bit in the refrigerator at home and have been baking the remainder 2 or 4 cookies at a time to make them last as long as possible.