The New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookies
These New York Times chocolate chip cookies are our family’s absolute favorite chocolate chip cookies - ever. Huge chunks of chocolate, crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside and finished with a touch of sea salt, these just can’t be beat.
Have you ever heard the story of how the humble chocolate chip cookie came to be? In honor of International Women's Day, I'd like to share it with you, since it was, of course, invented by a woman.
In 1938, chef Ruth Graves Wakefield owned the Toll House Inn in Whitman Massachusetts. It was a tourist lodge and a popular restaurant where Ruth made delicious homemade meals for her guests. One afternoon while making cookies, she substituted a semisweet chocolate bar for bakers chocolate, which she had run out of. However, instead of the chocolate melting, as she was used to seeing with the bakers chocolate, the chocolate "chips" from the semisweet bar softened into nice puddles within the cookie. The cookies were an enormous hit, thanks to a feature on an episode of the popular radio program The Betty Crocker Cooking School of the Air. And because the chocolate that Ruth used in the cookies was sold by the Nestle Chocolate Company, sales of their semisweet chocolate bars went through the roof.
Ruth eventually agreed to allow Nestle to print the recipe for her famous cookies on their chocolate labels in exchange for a lifetime supply of chocolate. (Smart cookie, amiright?...sorry, I couldn't help myself:) Due to the enormous popularity of the cookies, Nestle even began scoring it's chocolate bar to make it easier to cut into chunks, and eventually, in 1939, they began selling bags of ready-made chips. (Thanks Ruth!)
So, because this is my first cookie post, and because it is International Women's Day, I really can’t think of a better cookie to make than the good ole' chocolate chip. And while this variation is different from Ruth's original Tollhouse recipe, it is no less delicious. This recipe came from the New York Times and is definitely one of my all time favorites. Hunks of melty chocolate, a crisp outer edge, a soft center, and a sprinkling of sea salt make this cookie unbeatable. I should know - my toughest critics are 4 and 7 year old boys who, if left unattended, would inhale the whole batch in one sitting.
This recipe is not new. It’s been floating around the internet for several years. But these cookies are still hands down my absolute favorite cookies to make, and eat. That’s a bold statement, I know, but just try these and then try to tell me you don't agree.
This cookie is everything you want it to be, partially due to the mix of flours, the loads of dark chocolate chips - no wimpy semi-sweets found here – and just enough sea salt to make it go from wow to WOW!
Now, I have to warn you, this cookie does take a little extra work. First of all, there’s the two types of flour - cake and bread flour - which will probably require you to make an extra trip to the store (unless you happen to have both cake flour and bread flour lying around in your pantry). This is not such a big deal though and the mix of flours really helps to create the nice texture of the cookie.
And then there’s the wait time – the recipe states that the dough is supposed to chill for at least 24 hours. Yep, you read that right – 24 hours. Which is an eternity when you’re just hankering for a cookie. But,not to fear.
Even though these two extra steps do probably yield the best results, I’ve used plain old all purpose flour, and limited the chill time to just 3 hours and the cookies have still been nothing short of fabulous.
So, in honor of Ruth, and all the other amazing women out their doing their part to invent, create, teach, lead, empower, parent, fight, protect and inspire...make these cookies today. And then eat them. All. You deserve it.
Happy International Women's Day!
The New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookie
2 cups minus 2 tablespoons cake flour
1 & 2/3 cups bread flour
1 & 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 & 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 & 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 & 1/4 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 & 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1 cup tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 & 1/3 cups dark chocolate chips, at least 60% cacao content
Mix the cake and bread flour together then add the baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
In a larger, separate bowl, cream the butter and sugars on medium speed until very light. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix together. Slowly, add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. (Note: Depending on the flours you are using, I’ve found this mix to be a tad dry. If needed, add 1-2 tblsp of water to help with this).
Slowly fold in the chocolate chips. (It may seem that you are adding an ungodly amount of chocolate chips. You are. Just go with it – I promise it’s worth it.)
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 – 72 hours. (Two things here: 1. The dough may still seem a bit dry and crumbly at this point. It’s ok - after it’s chilled for a while it becomes more manageable and sticks together a bit more easily. 2. As I said above, if you really can’t wait, or are not good at planning ahead, like me, a 3 hour chill time still turns out a fabulous cookie.)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat.
Scoop out large balls of dough and place on the baking sheet (I used an ice cream scoop and just molded the dough with my hands.) Sprinkle the dough with sea salt and bake until they just start to turn a golden brown, typically around 17-20 minutes. (I’ve found that erring on the side of caution is best with these, as leaving them in for the full 20 minutes makes them almost too crisp. But this could just be my oven. Just note to check them at around 15 minutes and don’t let them start browning too much.) If you don’t want to make all the cookies at once (I’m able to get about 30 cookies from this recipe) you can store the dough in the fridge for up to 3 days and just make the rest later.)
Let cookies cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
Hide cookies before family descends like vultures and eats the whole lot. (I kid, but no. Really.)
Store any leftover cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days. (Trust me – they won’t last that long!)