Over the past few years I have been conducting interested research into cookies. My quest has been to find the ideal recipe for a homemade cookie - something that will produce the delicious crispy round the edges, chewy in the middle American style platter-sized cookie that I've only ever been able to buy.
Well, for a long time this research turned up tasty, yet *wrong* cookies. Finally, about a year ago, I came across a recipe on the BBC food page which, once tested, was promptly saved and renamed as "The *Goood* Cookies". Large, pale gold, lumpy with chocolate chunks, crispy round the edges and chewy soft in the centre they are exactly what I was hoping to create.
The stress earlier this week sent me to my cupboards in my automatic stress-reaction of baking followed by eating and I turned up this recipe again. Perfect. I only had dark chocolate, but i chopped it up and made a batch of acceptable, but slightly solid cookies. Yesterday I tried again. I made sure to measure out the flour exactly (I deliberately used too much last time, a mistake I now realise) and doubled my quantities so I could make two flavours. I cooked them up and have a classic and a new delicious favourite:- milk choc chip cookies and white chocolate and macadamia nut cookies. OMG - yum! Not sure whether my work colleagues will get to share *these* batches, though it'd probably be better for my waistline if they do. Perhaps I'll make some small ones ;-)
The recipe below is written from memory and includes my own little adjustments. Apologies for the changes between imperial and metric measurement - that's just how they stick in my mind!
3 1/2 oz granulated sugar
2 1/2 oz soft light brown sugar
125g unsalted butter
150g plain flour
150g goodies to add in (chocolate, nuts, raisins, a mixture thereof - whatever you fancy, but I recommend the white choc and macadamia nut mixture. Dried cranberries are nice too...)
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to Gas mark 4/180 degrees. Melt the butter slowly in a small, heavy pan. When melted pour into the sugars and beat well. Add in the egg and then the dry ingredients. When you have a nice homogenous cookie dough mix in your goodies and leave the bowl in a cool place until it firms up a little - do not add more flour like I did, it's not a good idea.
Place heaped tea spoonfuls of the mixture far apart on a sheet on baking parchment on a baking sheet. Put in the oven and cook for between 8 and 15 minutes depending on a number of things like the size of your cookies and the efficacy of your oven. My oven is so poor it takes about 20 minutes to cook them, but my mum's amazing Neff oven cooks them in 8 - so be aware!
When they're done the cookies will be about 3 times the diameter that they were, very flat, golden brown round the edges and with a shiny crackled glaze across the surface. Remove from oven, leave to cool a little, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Whilst they're very hot they'll be all floppy so don't try to take them off the tray immediately.
Eat with a tall glass of cold milk and revel in the American-ness ;-)
Cooked cookies will keep in an airtight tin for a few days (though not in my house, cos they get eaten within a day). Or you can divide them into balls and freeze them, wrapped in baking paper and foil (or in a long sausage affair which you chop slices off) then you can drop a few on a tray and whack them in a hot oven - hey presto! Instant fresh homemade cookies. How to fool people into thinking you're a Domestic Goddess!
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