Sunday, January 23, 2011

Adventures in Cookieland

Given the name of this blog it is not surprising that I like cookies. Since I lived in America I have also been obsessed with finding a recipe for the perfect oatmeal raisin cookies. I used to get these absolutely amazing oatmeal raising cookies in the GIANT bakery and since then I am determined to better those cookies, but have yet to succeed.
This week I finished my essays and finally managed to use my Kitchenaid mixer, I'm planning on posting seperately about the initial experience but one of the recipes that I had to try as soon as possible was Alton Brown's Chewy chocolate chip cookie. This recipe specifically calls for the use of a mixer and it makes me smile that Alton Brown uses a Kitchenaid in the episode 'Three Chips for Sister Marsha.' I tried the recipe and although I usually alter the recipes that I find, based on my preferences and little knowledge of baking, since I have a new toy it seems important to stick closely to the recipe.
Therefore the only alteration to this recipe is what I used as well as chocolate chips and I need to be honest about that. So here is the original recipe in US measurements, I will here include European measurements to the best of my ability.

Alton Brown's Chewy Cookie Recipe attempt, plus Fudge

200g Butter, melted
150g Brown Sugar
30g white sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
2 tbsp Milk
1 1/4 tsp vanilla essence
280g Bread Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Salt
125g chocolate chips, dark and milk
125g mini fudge pieces

In a stand mixer beat together the melted butter and sugars, slowly incorporate the eggs, milk and vanilla. Then beat on high until the mixture is silky smooth. Turn the mixer to low and sift together the flour, salt and baking soda, then incorporate this slowly into the butter mixture. Alton Brown says that this should be done in three sections, beating the dough on high in between additions, the first time I tried the recipe I ignored this and the cookies were not as chewy, so the next time I tried it his way and they were perfect. Once the mixture is thoroughly combined the add the chocolate and fudge pieces and mix to incorporate.
The mixture needs to be chilled then for 1 hour, although I left it overnight just because this suited my schedule. Then scoop the mixture with an ice-cream scoop onto a lined cookie sheet.





Bake in a oven preheated to 200 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes. Alton Brown discusses cookie baking in this episode and mentions that the cookies must be taken out once they brown and look crisp around the edges. Once they look done, they are burnt! This is never so true as in this recipe. If you over cook these cookies, they lose all their chewiness and become nothing but small cakes. So watch them and remove before you think they are done. To this end I used silicon sheets so I could slide the cookies off the tray but put them back on if necessary. The cookies turned out delicious and now the only problem is not eating them all in one sitting!!


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