Chocolate chip cookies are classic, something we all grew up eating and my family was no exception. They’re the cookie my mom would whip up for bake sales and make as a “cake” for my birthday parties with frosting. There was even a year in junior high when all I ate for lunch each day was a chocolate chip cookie and carton of chocolate milk (sorry, mom, that’s what I was really doing with my lunch money).
And don’t even get me started on chocolate chip cookie dough! I’d eat the individually frozen dough balls from Market Days right out of the freezer as an after school snack, and in high school my friends and I would share a roll of store-bought chocolate chip cookie dough and eat it with spoons.
While ubiquitous, to me chocolate chip cookies are also conventional. And although I wouldn’t call myself cutting edge in pretty much anything (I mean, come on, look at my shoes), I don’t usually make this cookie because there’s no challenge to it.
This takes me to a few years back when a recipe from The New York Times was making the rounds in the blogosphere. I wasn’t interested. After all, they’re just chocolate chip cookies, right?
Luckily, my friend Jenn paid attention and began making these cookies, which turned out to be absolutely freaking delicious. I’d even go so far as to call them a game-changer.
Whenever we’d talk about these cookies – and, oddly enough, they came up in conversation quite often – I always referred to this recipe as “aged chocolate chip cookies,” because that was really the trick, letting the batter rest (or age) in the fridge for 24 to 72 hours. But I never made them myself. They were her thing, not to mention waiting for the dough to age required patience and planning, two things that don’t really suit me.
I finally had a wake up call a few weeks ago after visiting Jenn in San Francisco. The first thing she gave me when I got off the BART was one of her aged chocolate chip cookies. It had been a while since I’d had one and I forgot just how freaking good these cookies were. That’s when I made the decision: I need to start making these myself – they’re just too good not to have on a regular basis. Or semi-regular basis, given this is the time of year for fruitless resolutions.
And did I mention these cookies are huge? But don’t try to make them smaller – it’s part of their charm. Also, the ingredients are kind of specific but once you have them, just think of all the cookies you can make!
So here’s my advice: make a batch. Freeze them for portion control. And then eat them whenever you need a delicious bite of comfort food or as a reward for making it through spin class. That’s my plan, anyways.
Happy New Year!
2 cups minus 2 Tablespoons cake flour (8 oz)
1 2/3 cup bread flour (8 oz)
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter (10 oz), at room temperature
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar (8 0z)
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 pounds bittersweet chocolate disks or chips
Sift the cake flour, bread flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl; set aside.
In a large bowl or mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time to the butter mixture, being sure to incorporate well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla.
In two batches and with the mixer on low, carefully but quickly add the flour to the butter, mixing just enough to incorporate it. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Cover the dough with plastic and let sit in the fridge for 24 to 72 hours. Try to be patient.
To bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with a silicone pad or parchment paper.
Scoop the dough into pieces the size of a large golf ball or a lime (3 1/2 oz). Keep refrigerated until ready to put in the oven.
Bake six cookies at a time. Press each dough ball into a disc and turn any chips sticking out vertically to lay flat. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
Bake 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown but still soft. Transfer the sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then place the cookies directly on the rack and cool to room temperature or eat warm.