Friday, July 25, 2008

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yes, this is a post inspired by the recent David Leite article in the New York Times.

I love chocolate chip cookies to distraction, and I like David Leite's site Leite's Culinaria (it's a great resource for recipes from newer cookbooks), so I was excited to try this recipe, though I'm always skeptical of articles touting perfection. Along with articles promising secrets or anything in list form, they're click-through gold, but it's pretty hard to live up to the claim.

I made the dough on Friday with the intention of bringing them to the Sommerfest at pub in the woods (The Tourist Club). Each time I opened the fridge during the two-day chilling process, I grew giddier.

On Sunday morning, I heated up the oven and got out my scale, ready to measure 3.5 oz portions out onto the cookie sheet. The scale ended up being vital because I would not have made the cookies that large without actually seeing the weight. The recipe very coyly says that the cookie dough balls should end up being the size of a golf ball, but 3 1/2 ounces is more like a small baseball. I pressed a bit of sea salt onto the top of each cookie before putting them in the oven.

The first batch came out with molten-dough middles, which was good except for the salmonella fear. I kept the next two batches in a few minutes longer (20 minutes as opposed to 18), and the results were better.

The verdict: They were good, but the best? No. They tasted like bakery chocolate chip cookies, or like...mall cookies. Rich, melting, well-engineered, surely, but not transcendent.

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