Please allow me to share with you my favourite chocolate chip cookie recipe. It is Nigella’s and not mine, in sheer contrast with all other similar recipes you find around, which chefs inherited from their relatives. The truth is I have always loved chocolate chip cookies but, coming from a non-anglicised background, these biscuits are not part of my culinary heritage. However, I did some research on the topic. The main ingredients which constitute a good chocolate chip cookie are: a good balance between caster and soft brown sugar (for inner chewiness), vanilla extract or seeds, plenty of butter for a nice crisp finish and a good chocolate to make the chips/chunks. Also, a good chocolate chip cookie will traditionally be crisp on the outside and still irresistibly chewy in the middle, a result which is usually achieved by means of a careful bake.
The below recipe works wonders for me. It is easy enough to make and I am still to find someone who does not like it. If you don’t have an ice-cream scoop, you can also use a quarter cup measure or, should you lack that as well, use a standard spoon. I usually manage to get 14 cookies out of this dough.
- 150g soft unsalted butter
- 125g light brown sugar
- 100g caster sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg, fridge-cold
- 1 egg yolk, fridge-cold
- 300g plain flour
- 1/s tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 330g dark chocolate chips
- Line two baking sheets with baking parchment and pre-heat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius.
- Put the brown and caster sugar in a bowl together with the butter, then cream the mixture either with a freestanding mixer with the paddle attachment or with a wooden spoon.
- Beat in the vanilla, the cold egg and the egg yolk and keep on beating until the mixture is light and creamy.
- Slowly mix in the flour and bicarbonate of soda just until blended. The mixture will be stiff enough, so do not be alarmed.
- Mix in the chocolate chips by hand.
- Scoop the cookie dough using an ice-cream scoop and even it out using a palette knife. Drop the dough dollops onto the prepared baking sheet. Leave some space between the cookies as they will expand.
- Bake for 15-17 minutes in the pre-heated oven or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring to wire racks.
- Much in the same way as most cookie recipes, this one can be slightly tweaked and personalised. I successfully baked a batch of double chocolate chip cookies by substituting 40g of the flour with cocoa powder (so that makes it 40g cocoa powder + 260g plain flour) and by adding 1 tsp milk at the end to loosen the mixture slightly.
- The same applies to the chocolate chips: if you prefer, you can use white chocolate or even milk chocolate ones, although I do believe dark chocolate works particularly well in this case.