Tuesday, February 8, 2011

New favorite cookie recipe!

Recipe from Judy's Kitchen (+ peanut butter chips)! 

INGREDIENTS: 1 stick butter, unsalted, cold, cut into chunks
1/2 cup sugar (I used 1 Tbsp. Stevia)
1 cup brown sugar (recipe actually calls for 1 cup of white and 1 cup of brown sugar)
1 large egg, cold
1 tsp. vanilla extract (I used 2 tsp. coffee granules dissolved in 1-1/2 tsp. coffee brandy)
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour (Pillsbury unbleached)
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
6 oz. chocolate (I used a 5-oz. bar of chopped Hershey's Milk Chocolate with Almonds and 1/4
cup of Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Chips)
1/2 cup toasted whole walnuts

DIRECTIONS: In medium bowl of electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars on a medium-low speed till well blended but not fluffy. Add the egg and flavoring and beat again on medium-low till well combined. Do not overbeat, as overbeating creates air bubbles which then deflate the cookie. Add the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda and mix on slowest speed till just combined. Dough should not be too sticky nor too dry. It should be a stiff dough. Add the whole nuts and chocolate to the dough and let the mixer blend them in, at the same time crunching the walnuts. This will leave some nice big pieces of walnuts, giving the cookie that rustic, lumpy look. Chill the dough thoroughly, at least 2 hours, and preferably overnight.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375F with oven rack in center position. Line 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper. Levain measures each lump of dough for a perfect 6 oz. I made myself a note, again, to order a kitchen scale, which I've been meaning to do for about a year now and keep forgetting. Cookie Madness measured out 4 oz. lumps. I used my ice cream scoop for nice rounded scoops of dough and I have no idea what they weighed, but I'm guessing they were 2 oz. Personally, I don't want cookies any bigger than that, but if you have a scale and you like huge monster cookies, go for the 4 or 6 oz. I got 12 cookies out of this batch of dough. Probably the first batch was under 2 oz. and the second batch was over 2 oz. because I had no scale and I was just guessing. (The 2nd batch had some dough left over which I divided among the remaining 6 cookies.) There is much wisdom in owning and using kitchen scales.

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