My barometer for a good bakery is the chocolate chip cookie.
If a bakery invests the time to create a chocolate chip cookie that rivals what I bake for myself, then it demonstrates an attention to detail that I assume seeps into other products.
However if a bakery sells an average cookie or an even worse crime, sells a stale cookie, then it indicates a lack of caring.
The chocolate chip cookie is not usually a dessert consumed at the bakery. It is taken on-the-go, to eat in lieu of lunch in the car, or hoarded for savoring as an after dinner treat. So if a bakery cares enough to bake me a fresh, above average cookie, with the finest ingredients, knowing that I will not stay to either give compliments or complaints, then I know it is a bakery worth my business.
My chocolate chip cookie recipe combines some of my favorite elements of different cookie recipes I have attempted over the years. I don’t want my cookie too thin and crunchy, nor do I want it thick or soft. I want it to have a crunchy bite and a chewy interior.
They are a chocolatey, salty, and fatty cookie just right for me, and my family hasn’t complained yet.
- 1 1/2 (6 oz.) sticks butter, soft
- 3/4 c. granulated sugar
- 3/4 c. brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 Tbs. vanilla extract
- 2 c. (heaping) flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 2 cups chocolate chips
- 1 cup toasted walnuts or pecans
Oven 325 degrees, parchment on a baking sheet (or grease sheet lightly)
Place butter and sugars in the bowl of a mixer. Use paddle attachment at low-medium speed to combine. Add egg and egg yolk. Combine. Add vanilla and combine.
In a separate small bowl add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk together.
Add flour mixture to the butter and sugar mixture. Mix together until almost combined with streaks of flour still visible. Add chocolate chips and nuts if using and mix until fully combined.
Refridgerate your dough for at least a half hour or an hour is better. (I know this is a disappointing step when you are excited to eat a cookie, but a necessary one because not only will it make them taste better, but it will prevent them from becoming a flat mess when baking.)
Roll your dough into about 1″ balls and flatten slightly. Give the cookies space on the sheet, as though they are physical distancing, probably not 6 feet or even 6 inches, but about a half inch to an inch will do.
Bake for 15-20 minutes (18 might be the sweet spot) until browned on the bottom
Let rest for about a minute on the cookie sheet after taking them out of the oven and then use a spatula to remove them and place on a cooling rack. If you leave them on the hot sheet pan too long then the cookie will continue to bake and you do not want a cookie with a tough bottom.