Perfect Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Large - nearly as large as my hand! - and with the perfect, gorgeous chewy texture.

Large – nearly as large as my hand! – and with the perfect, gorgeous chewy texture.

These are the most amazing chocolate chip cookies EVER. EVER! They are so good that I have titled them “Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies.” Their secret? A mixture of bread flour and cake flour.

Seriously. Bread flour to give the cookie a chewy texture, cake flour to reign in the chew, if you will. This is how they achieve a texture that is so moist, so chewy, I feel I’ve found the only chocolate chip cookie recipe I will ever use for the rest of my life. Which is funny, because Kate of For Me, For You, the source of this recipe, said the same thing. I scoffed, because that’s a hell of a thing to say about any recipe. But I’ve been on such a cookie kick lately, making kick-ass cookies from various blogs (some of those cookies disappeared too quickly to make it onto this blog!), I decided to try this recipe anyway.

The only place I’ve ever encountered a cookie with a texture so beautifully balanced between chewy, crispy, and moist was at a really high-end bakery across the country from where I live. Apparently I live in a cookie desert. 🙂 The brown sugary goodness of the dough is just out of this world; it’s exactly the right ratio of brown sugar to white sugar, and there’s a teeny, almost indiscernible tang of salt that accentuates the sweetness. This is the chocolate chip cookie I always wanted to make but always fell short of achieving, and I could never figure out why. It’s the bread flour, the cake flour, the brown sugar to white sugar ratio.

A close-up shot of the cookies' insides. They are moist, and packed with chocolate, and the chewiness is UNBELIEVABLE! But in a good way. You know, the way the Nestly Tollhouse cookies always wanted to be, but couldn't because they were weak and ineffectual.

A close-up shot of the cookies’ insides. They are moist, and packed with chocolate, and the chewiness is UNBELIEVABLE! But in a good way. You know, the way the Nestly Tollhouse cookies always wanted to be, but couldn’t because they were weak and ineffectual.

But there is one more thing that makes this cookie so amazing, and gives it notes of caramel along with brown sugar.

You refrigerate the dough for a minimum of 36 hours. I refrigerated my dough for 72 hours. I tasted the dough right after it was mixed, then again at the 36 hour mark, and finally at 72 hours, when I was ready to bake. The flavour of caramel was absent when the dough was fresh, faint after 36 hours, and notable at 72 hours. Refrigerating the dough allows the flavours to mature and saturate the baked cookie with a marvelous complexity of flavour that I’ve not had in any other chocolate chip cookie, ever. Not even the ones I tried cross-country. The flavours were even better after the cookies had cooled. Wild, I tell you! Normally cookies are best right out of the oven, but not here. Not with these badasses.

What a happy chocolate stack. :)

What a happy chocolate stack. 🙂

I formed the cookies out of 1/3 cup dough each. I wound up with gorgeous, hand-sized cookies that did spread a little in the oven, but were still thick and chewy (I keep using that word, and yes, it means what I think it means!), rather than melting into the sad, flat pancakes I always wound up with when using other recipes. You could form the cookies out of 2 – 3 TBS each, if you’d like. Just remember to form the dough into logs, regardless of the amount of dough you use to form a cookie, and place those logs vertically on the cookie sheets to help prevent the dough from spreading excessively while baking. That’s a tip I gleaned from Sally over at Sally’s Baking Addiction. She’s the cookie queen! 🙂

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield: 18 – 24 cookies, depending on size

Ingredients:
2 cups minus 2 TBS cake flour (8 1/2 oz.)
1 2/3 cups bread flour (8 1/2 oz.)
1 ¼ tsp. baking soda
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 ½ tsp. coarse salt
2 ½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 ¼ cups + 1 TBS light brown sugar
1 cup + 2 TBS white sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 TBS vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups – 2 1/4 cups mix-ins

Method:
Mix bread flour, cake flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.*

Blend butter and sugars until light and fluffy, 3 – 5 minutes. Scrape bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition. Scrape bowl and blend in vanilla; scrape bowl. On low speed, add dry ingredients all at once and mix only until just combined.

Add mix-ins, and mix briefly to combine.

Press plastic wrap directly against surface of dough and then cover surface of bowl itself with more plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 36 hours; 72 hours is ideal.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop dough, 2 TBS or up to 1/3 cup at a time, and form a log shape with each scoop. Place logs vertically onto baking sheet, leaving about 2″ between each cookie (your baking sheet may only be able to accommodate 6 cookies at a time).

Bake 15 – 25 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown. Check the cookies at the 15 minute mark and about 3 – 5 minutes thereafter in case they still aren’t ready. (Baking 1/3 cup-sized cookies took me about 25 minutes.) If the edges are golden brown, but the centers of the cookies still look underbaked, that’s okay; take the cookies out anyway. Remember, it’s better to underbake these than overbake them. Allowing them to cool completely on baking sheet will help the cookies firm up.

Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

*I spilled about 2 TBS of the flour mixture onto the table – oops! The cookies still turned out well, despite this mishap. 🙂

Source: Slightly adapted from For Me, For You

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