I am a fan of America's Test Kitchen. Most of their recipes that I have tried have been good if not great. In one of their recent newsletters, they had a chocolate chip cookie recipe that was touted to be excellent. And, while I have a fantastic chocolate chip cookie recipe thanks to my dad, and I will defend it to the death, I am always willing to try a new one. I went to their site to watch the video and transcribed the recipe (more or less). I also watched the one about the chocolate chip taste test. Which gave me an idea. :)
I would do a taste test for the family, using the new recipe, by dividing the dough into 3 parts and putting 3 different brands of chocolate chips in each one.
Here is what I chose to put in: Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Chips (who knew there were 2 "r"s), Heath Milk Chocolate Toffee Bits (not technically chocolate chips but I had to try them) and Market Pantry (Target) Semi-Sweet Chocolate chips (no image to be found!)
The Ghirardelli chips are the winner from the ATK taste test. I have used them in brownies, melted but not as a chip in anything.
The dough is a little different than what I am used to. For example, I don't like using butter in my cookies because they spread too much and can get greasy. I might be okay with a butter/shortening mix to help the cookies hold up. This recipe calls for browning 10 tablespoons of butter and then adding 4 more. Which makes 14 tablespoons of melted butter. I don't know if I did the browning part 100% right but it was brown and smelled like toffee so I figured I was good. And they were greasy. Very, very greasy.
The recipe also uses more brown sugar(dark) and less white sugar. It tasted fantastic. I'm sure the butter helped too.
They recommended using 2-3 tablespoons of dough per cookie, so I did that. It made for some nice big cookies, especially since they spread a lot. The kids loved that.
I did sort of mess up my plan to make 3 different kids of cookie, because when I was making the dough, my 5 year old was helping me. I told him to get out the eggs and he did not, and with all that was going on during the mixing process (my house is chaotic frequently) the eggs did not ever come out of the fridge and so as I was dividing the dough I was thinking "this is really dry and crumbly. They said in the video it would be different than other doughs, but this is more than I expected." Then it hit me. The Eggs! I had already added the Heath bits to the first third of dough so I was stuck with Heath bits in all the cookies. I dumped the dough back in the big bowl and added the beaten eggs and mixed it up really well. I don't think it affected the cookies.
Then I re-divided the dough, put chips in 2 of them and baked them up.
These cookies taste really good, they are a good texture, and they really don't even need chocolate in them. They could stand alone. BUT it was a chocolate taste test, so here are the taste test results from the 5 of us:
#1: Ghirardelli: 2 votes for 1st place, 2 votes for 2nd place, 1 vote for 3rd place
#2: Market Pantry Semi-sweet: 2 votes for 1st place, 2 votes for 2nd place, and 1 vote for 3rd place
#3: Heath Toffee Bits: 1 vote for 1st place, 2 votes for 2nd place, 2 votes for 3rd place
The results were pretty useless. :)
But it was still fun to do.
(My 1st choice was the Ghirardelli, by the way)
Their Recipe (you have to have a membership to view it)
My recipe transcription:
America's Test Kitchen Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies
14 TBSP Butter – divided
½ cup white sugar
¾ cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 whole large egg plus 1 yolk
1 ¾ cups flour (8 ¾ oz)
½ tsp baking soda
Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375
In aluminum pan, melt and brown 10 tbsp butter. (1-3 minutes)
When browned, pour into heat proof bowl and whisk in remaining 4 tbsp butter. Add in sugars and whisk until combined. Add salt, vanilla, and eggs and whisk. Let sit 3 minutes and whisk. Let sit 3 minutes and whisk. Let sit 3 minutes and whisk. (Let “sit and whisk” 3 times in total.)
In a separate bowl, measure out flour and whisk in baking soda. Add to batter and stir to combine. Add chocolate chips and stir to combine.
Line baking sheet with parchment paper and scoop 3 TBSP dough and space 2 inches apart. Bake 11 – 14 minutes. Cool on cookie sheet about 30 minutes.
I would love to hear your opinion about these cookies! Leave me a comment, please!