March 5, 2012

Pin It Levain Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookies

Taken From Vanilla Sugar Blog

Week 10

So my friend Jenna gave me this recipe and some of her own notes on it about a month ago. Jenna brought some samples to our weekly lunches and they were delicious!  I'd been looking for a recipe that yielded super fat cookies.  I wanted them to be tall and rounded and delicious.  Jenna's totally turned out that way, so I wanted to try too.

The key to thicker cookies when using butter is to use cold butter.  I learned this through trial and error and it was recently confirmed when I was looking through my newly purchased Joy the Baker cook book. Bonnie and I actually got to meet Joy and have her sign our copies of the cook book during her book tour at Omnivore books last Sunday in SF. I'm super excited to try, mmm, pretty much everything in her book! It’s mostly sweets, so I may have to space them out a bit, but everything looks amazing and I would definitely recommend picking up a copy.

So, in addition to my cake filled PB cups, I also wanted to bring something else to Sunday night dinner, and was feeling inspired after meeting Joy.  The thing to do would have been to make one of her recipes, but I've been meaning to try this one, so my mind was set.

This recipe basically entails using frozen butter and also chilling the dough balls in the fridge before baking. I chilled the dough balls for about 15 minutes, which seemed sufficient (although I see now the recipe says 20, so I may have been a little impatient), but they still flattened out a little more than I had hoped (definitely user error on my part).

Also, after talking to Jenna and feeding her a cookie from my batch, I realized I did a few more things differently than when she made her batch.  She used frozen butter that she had cubed and put in the freezer a few days before making these cookies. I just used refrigerated butter. Jenna also followed Vanilla Sugar Blog's directions about baking the cookies for 8 minutes at 375 then for 8-10 minutes at 325, whereas I was lazy and just baked them for 18 minutes at 365 (oops, I think mine was at 350...doh) the whole time, which was the other option. Jenna had warned me to cook them a little less than 18 min (she felt hers were a little overdone), so I checked them at 15, but they just didn't seem done.

I have mixed feelings about the chilled butter approach to baking cookies.  Don't get me wrong, they turned out nicely and tasted great, but I really prefer my cookies to be chewy and gooey, which also means a little raw.  It's just too hard to leave these a little raw as they are so thick.  These cookies ended up cakey and soft, which was good, but not my favorite. But that’s ok, it was something new and different and lots of people like chewy cakey cookies, so I still say it was a win. I will definitely try this recipe again though and follow Jenna's instructions more completely, which will hopefully result in a thicker cookie J
Finished product
Mmm, raw dough...I resisted.
Moundy cookies
Pretty thick, right?
They stacked up themselves; they wanted to impress you

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