Verdict: Win

I had a bad sore throat and headache tonight, which prevented me from effectively studying biochemistry. Instead, I craved chocolate chip cookies, so I whipped these up. In the process, I ended up feeling a lot better (until I gobbled down two cookies, which led to a sugar overdose). Honestly, I was craving the best chocolate chip cookies from one of the dining halls, but since I lacked the recipe I tried to substitute with "one of the best" chocolate chip cookie recipes out there (according to the food blog world). These cookies were pretty tasty, but they had a slight off-putting dough smell, even after baking them (maybe it's just me who doesn't like that doughy smell). I used bittersweet chocolate baking chips, but next time I'd like to use semi sweet chocolate chunks (or large chips) just because I like my cookies a little sweeter. I'll also add some chopped nuts (pecans or almonds or something delicious). Finally, I under baked these cookies by a minute for chewier cookies, but it wasn't exactly the kind of chewy that I was looking for. Overall these were really good, but I'm still on the search for the perfect chocolate chip cookie (I may try David Lebovitz's version next).

Cook's Illustrated Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies from The Way the Cookie Crumbles
Yield: 16 cookies

1¾ cups (8¾ ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
14 tablespoons (1¾ sticks) unsalted butter
½ cup (3½ ounces) granulated sugar
¾ cup (5¼ ounces) packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1¼ cups semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
¾ cup chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted (optional)

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

Heat 10 tablespoons butter in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking, swirling pan constantly until butter is dark golden brown and has nutty aroma, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and, using heatproof spatula, transfer browned butter to large heatproof bowl. Stir remaining 4 tablespoons butter into hot butter until completely melted.

Add both sugars, salt and vanilla to bowl with butter and whisk until fully incorporated. Add egg and yolk and whisk until mixture is smooth with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds. Let mixture stand for 3 minutes, then whish for 30 seconds. Repeat process of resting and whisking 2 more times until mixture is thick, smooth and shiny. Using rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir in flour mixture until just combined, about 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if using), giving dough final stir to ensure no flour pockets remain.

Divide dough into 16 portions, each about 3 tablespoons (or use a #24 cookie scoop). Arrange 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets, 8 dough balls per sheet.

Bake cookies 1 tray at a time until cookies are golden brown and still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, 10-14 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack; cool cookies completely before serving.


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