Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ooof. I should have known. In my last post I wrote that things were looking pleasingly quiet. Ha! I ended up working all hours for a couple of weeks before falling into a heap last Friday. I attempted to relax over the weekend but wasn’t particularly successful and on Sunday afternoon I fell into a public transport induced fug. It was a straw that broke the camel’s back type situation, quickly remedied with a cab, many cup of tea and lots of cookies. Thank goodness for the cookies.  (As a side note, Sydney Buses please get your act together. You test my patience like nothing else).

Cookies, piles of them

 

I was craving simple, unfussy homemade chocolate cookies for most of last week. Last Friday night, after a big bowl of my housemate’s stellar gnocchi and a couple of episodes of Heart of Dixie (!), I put  this dough together and stashed it in the fridge to rest overnight. I baked them on Saturday morning, hoping that they’d live up to my very high expectations. I’m grateful that they did. It was actually surprisingly difficult to find a recipe that hadn’t been turned fancy with peanut butter or chocolate ganache or that didn’t require vast quantities of butter but these cookies totally fit the brief. They’re re simple and fast to put together, moorish (they’re more chocolate than cookie) and you get more than enough cookies  to go around without having to resort to having them for breakfast. I took half along to a barbecue, gave my boyfriend some for his lunchbox and still had enough leftover. (Well, enough to get me through Monday. I’ll be making them again soon for sure).

Cookies, up close

Chocolate Chip Cookies (makes 30-34 small cookies)

Recipe adapted from a recipe from Sherry Yard’s Desserts by the Yard printed in the New York Times

Note that this recipe involves resting the dough so begin it the day before you’d like to bake the cookies.

185 grams plain flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
115 g butter, cut into pieces, at room temperature
100 g caster sugar
80 g light brown sugar
pinch salt
1 egg, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
200 g dark chocolate, roughly chopped

1.  Sift together flour and baking soda and set aside.

2. Cream the butter in a stand mixer until pale yellow, approximately 2 minutes. Add the sugars and salt and continue beating the mixture until it is smooth and pale. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.

3. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat on low speed for 15 seconds, or until they are fully incorporated into the mixture. Do not over-beat (and don’t worry if the mixture looks a little curdled. It will come together when you add the flour).

4. On low speed, add the sifted flour. Beat slowly until all of it is incorporated into the butter mixture. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add chocolate pieces and mix in. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and leave it to chill in the fridge for at least an hour (and preferably over night).

5. When you are ready to bake the cookies, remove the cookies from the fridge and leave on the bench for about 10 minutes to soften slightly (less if it’s hot!). Preheat the oven to 180’C (160’C fan forced)/350’F and place an oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Line a baking sheet with baking paper.

6. Roll the dough into balls about the size of an unshelled walnut. Place on the baking tray a couple of centimeters apart (I get about 12 to a tray). Bake for 12-15 minutes or until they are lightly gold at the edges and still soft in the middle (start checking at the 10 minute mark). Leave to cool on the tray for a few minutes before moving to a wire cooling rack. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

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