Simple Pleasures: Amazing Chocolate Chip Cookies

Mmmmmmmmmm!

It’s been a stressful two weeks around here.  There’s been entirely too much talk of braking distance, autobahn speed limits, and right-before-left rule exceptions.  Heck, there’s just been too much talk around here – in German, that is.

What’s a mama to do?

Why, make some delicious chocolate chip cookies of course.  And take a nap.

Well, okay, minus the nap part.  That was just wishful thinking.

But, speaking of wishing, I should warn you in advance to freeze most of this chocolate chip cookie dough or you will be wishing you weren’t so sick from eating the ENTIRE batch.

Yes, they are THAT amazing.

In case you’re wondering, I usually just make the recipe on the back of the chocolate chip bag.  But, the amount of butter freaks me out, so I halve it and use a substitute like applesauce or yogurt.  I feel guilty about all that white flour, so I use half whole grain.

Now that I’ve confessed my fat fears to you, I have to add a disclaimer for this recipe.  Don’t do that with these cookies.  Make them exactly as stated.  Really.

These almost-as-good-as-Ritz-Carlton-cookies come from the New York Times.  You can find the original recipe here.  I used the directions found on My Baking Addiction, but the recipe is the same.  I’m not going to repost it here; just click either of the aforementioned links.

Note that this recipe requires some advance planning as most of us “normal” people don’t have bread and cake flours on hand.  Nor do we have the patience to wait while the dough chills for 24 hours.  But that’s another matter entirely.

The ingredient lineup. Yep, count ’em, I used FIVE bars of dark chocolate.

And while we’re talking ingredients, if you happen to be living in Germany, my friend Erin over at Texanerin Baking has some super helpful tips on making these cookies with German ingredients:

Flour: weigh it. (I didn’t do this since I don’t own a scale, so use the scoop & sweep method if you have to measure it.)
Cake flour: Wurzener Kuchen Mehl. It’s found almost everywhere except at the discounters.  (I used Edeka Professional Quality Weizenmehl, type 405 since I couldn’t find the Wurzener Kuchen Mehl anywhere in my city.)
Bread flour: Kathi Weizen Mehl 550, NOT 405! Found in the same places as above.  (I used Gold Puder Weizen Mehl again because I couldn’t find Kathi Weizen Mehl, but mine was Type 550 as recommended.)
Butter and eggs: room temperature!
Brown sugar: the moist kind from Asian shops or make your own.  (Even though I make my own, I had a bag of Trader Joe’s organic brown sugar from the US that I’d been saving for an occasion such as this.)
Vanilla: make your own!
Chocolate: Forget chocolate chips.  Use Zartbitter blocks from discount grocery stores that cost around 3.50 or 4.00/kg.

The chilled and plastic-wrapped dough after 36+ hours.

Other tips from Erin:

– You MUST wait the 24 hours.  (You can actually wait longer if you need to – I waited about 36.)
– I think the sea salt on top isn’t needed but go ahead if you like.
– I’m always tempted to press down the cookies a little before baking, but don’t do it with these. They came out better without any pressing.
– Bake at 160 Celsius with the fan on.  (I don’t have a fan, so I obviously didn’t use one.  And 170C worked better for me than 160C.)
– Ovens are different. Be around to check on the first batch to make sure the time is accurate for you.  (True – my cookies took much longer than the recommend baking time!)

And one final note – only bake the amount of dough you are willing to consume instantly (or have enough willpower to give away)!  Freeze the rest.  Erin recommends freezing the dough according to this method.  This was my first time freezing cookie dough (and putting more than one stick of butter in a batch of cookies), and I’m so glad I did.

Now whenever the stress level gets too high or we have unexpected guests, I can defrost some dough while the oven preheats, bake, and have warm ooey-gooey cookies ready to go!

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5 thoughts on “Simple Pleasures: Amazing Chocolate Chip Cookies

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