So this is a recipe post! (yes I do actually make some of my own food once in a while… if I’m not too lazy, haha) Inspiration is taken from The Secret Cookie Service and a chocolate chip cookie post on Kirbie’s Cravings. :)
I’ve been trying to recreate The Secret Cookie Service’s chocolate chip cookies without much success… so for the time being that project is being put on hold. Instead I decided to use a chocolate chip cookie base that I knew would be amazing and added the mint chocolate on top, a la the secret cookie service. It’s a good substitute, but it’s not the same thing. (sadly)
The truth is, before I moved to San Diego (to go to UCSD)… I had never really given chocolate chip cookies much thought. Or any kind of cookie for that matter (except macarons). So it wasn’t until I started reading Kirbie’s Cravings about the perfect chocolate chip cookie that I was sufficiently intrigued to make them myself. Of course making them was kind of a chore due to the ingredients that go into the batter, but I bought all of them anyway. :p That was… the start of fall quarter and so I’ve used up all of my chocolate disks by then. However, I still had the bread flour and the cake flour (which are probably the most vital and “unusual” ingredients that go into these cookies), so I decided to make a new batch with some modifications to satisfy my cravings for mint chocolate chip cookies (since they’re usually only offered once a week).
Below is the recipe, copied from Kirbie’s Cravings (which is an amazing blog that posts much more regularly than this one, hehe – so if you have the time and you live in San Diego, you should check out her blog!) with my minor modifications (aka, the modifications of a lazy college student).
NY Times Chocolate Chip Cookies
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 15 mins
Total time: 30 mins
2 cups minus 2 tablespoons (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour
1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract
1 chocolate chips
2 packages of Andes mints
- Unwrap all the Andes mints (make someone else do this part)
- Mix flours, baking soda, and baking powder into a bowl. Set aside.
- Cream butter and sugars together in a separate bowl, whether by hand or with a mixer.
- Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
- Stir in the vanilla.
- In a plastic bag, crush the Andes mints to desired size (I’d say about 1/4 of what each normal piece is)
- Add in dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
- Drop chocolate chips and one third of the Andes mint chunks in and incorporate them.
- Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours. (or if you’re impatient, it’s all right to bake right away, but you sacrifice quality of the finished cookies)
- Save the other 2/3 Andes mint chunks in a zipbloc bag for when you bake.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Set aside.
- Scoop 6 3 1/2-ounce mounds of dough (the size of generous golf balls) onto baking sheet, making sure to turn horizontally any chocolate pieces that are poking up; it will make for a more attractive cookie.
- Press several of the bigger chunks of Andes mints onto the tops of each cookie.
- Bake for 13 to 15 minutes.
- Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day.
Ingredients I’ve omitted: salt and sea salt – I never add salt in my cookies… and chocolate disks.
Ingredients I’ve added/substituted in: chocolate chips and Andes mint chocolate.
Oh, yes, also I don’t have a mixer (hand or kitchenaid) here with me in San Diego, so I just cream the butter and sugars by hand. I’ve found that it actually makes for a much more even mixture, but the downside is that you really have to let the butter stand at room temperature, you can’t just rely on the power of the mixer to blend it for you.
In addition to all that, I’ve found it’s better to take out the cookies while they’re still relatively unformed so that they can continue baking once they’re outside the oven. This leads to an “undercooked” cookie that is amazingly soft and chewy at once… much like the secret service cookies. I would say pull them out of the oven when you think they’re almost done. It really depends on watching them carefully and how much dough goes into each cookie. But if you prefer denser and more well-formed cookies, I would advise you to follow the instructions on Kirbie’s blog and not to deviate.
These cookies do spread, so I would definitely give each rounded ball of dough their own space.
Close up shot. (I actually ran out of chunks of Andes mints to press onto the tops of cookies so I had to ration out the remaining pieces because this recipe makes for a lot of cookies… a lot more than I had accounted for)
A finished product. (you can see the difference between pulling them out early, on purpose compared to baking them for the full time as pictured in Kirbie’s blog – I’ve actually made them by following the recipe to the T, but those pictures look ugly, so you can go enjoy hers instead :p)
The greatest thing about this recipe is that you can refrigerate the dough and enjoy freshly baked cookies whenever you want (especially if you freeze the dough).