Monday, August 11, 2008

A Chocolate Chip Cookie Experiment

I made the New York Times Ultimate Cookies yesterday, so I could bake them today.  Are you getting sick of those?  Well, I'm really just trying different things with the recipe and having a good time actually.  This experiment resulted in, surprisingly, the same cookies!  The NY Times cookies, like Jacques Torres's cookies call for cake flour and bread flour, which I have always used with this recipe.  But I wanted to see if all purpose flour would produce the same results.  I made half a batch of each.  I also wanted to see if there was a difference in using chocolate chips instead of the chocolate "disks", which I have used chocolate bars chopped up and Hershey's Bliss chocolates, sliced thinner for the "disks".  I'm not going to retype the recipe for you, but I have linked it a number of times in some previous posts about this cookie.  I followed it exactly, except for the flour, with the half batch I did with all purpose flour, I used unbleached.  The only other change in the recipe is just the chocolate chips.  I chilled the dough for about 20 hours.  I made these small ones (not the 3 1/2 oz. ones that the recipes says to do).  Mine are 5/8 oz. each.  I baked 4 dozen cookies today and still have about 1/2 the dough left of each one.  These smaller ones bake for 9-10:30 minutes.  There is more to bake tomorrow!  Can you tell the difference in the two cookies with the different flours?



The two pictures above are the ones with cake and bread flour.



These are the ones with unbleached all purpose flour.  They really do look and taste the same, SO, if you want to make these delicious cookies, go ahead and use all purpose flour.  I, on the other hand, tend to have cake and bread flour on hand and will continue to make these as the recipe says.  I also think I REALLY like the chopped chocolate bars, or "disks" better as they seem to make it like "layers" of chocolate throughout the cookie, which I really like.  These will be my "splurge" cookies and I would make them again in a pinch using all purpose flour and chocolate chips. 

Have I mentioned that I like these?  ; )


Kevin went on a business trip to LA last week and visited a Lego store.  He bought the boys each something and bought me this fun looking cupcake pan/Jell-o mold.  Taylor was dying for me to make Jell-o. 


Taylor was dying for me to make Jell-o.  Of the five (one pkg. of Jell-o only filled five of the molds), here's the best one.


Taylor was less than thrilled about this.  I even made the Jell-o Jiggler recipe, which should have been more firm and held up better.  Oh well.  We'll see if cupcakes work better.  I have a sneaking suspicion that the cake may not come out of the little Lego circles.  Any tips on greasing and flouring?  Maybe a rice crispy treat would come out nicely.


Which peach would you rather have?  The little one actually was really small and the big one was REALLY big.  I got one at the farmer's market and the other at Walmart.  The tiny one was actually from the farmer's market.  The thing I really like about these, which I've been getting about a bag of 10 or so little ones like this, somewhat differing in size, but all smaller, is that they are perfect size for the boys.  They would waste a lot of the giant one.  And do you think they'd just share the big one, oh no--they have to have their own.  So while both were delicious, the little ones win with me.  Thanks, Farmer's Market!

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What?  Sam is up on a chair again?  Well, this may have been the last time.  I thought he was going to seriously drive me nuts moving the chairs around and getting up to wherever he wanted, but I smartened up.  For a few days, I just put the chairs out on the deck.  He was NOT happy as he'd look longingly at them out the window.  Now all the dining chairs and bench (one side of our table has a bench) are in his bedroom, which is always shut, he pretty much just sleeps in there.  So, little Sam-o cannot climb and Mommy is happier.  He's a determined little Stink, so I'm sure it will only be a short time before he's "up" somehow.  He tries to stand on anything that can be used as a step, like the Lego bucket, my nice stainless steel bowls, pitchers, whatever looks good, you can see the wheels a-turnin' in his head as he tries to figure it all out.  I think I'm really doomed!  He's so stinkin' cute though!

Taylor always wants to take pictures with the camera whenever I have it out.  I let him snap a few of me, which I will not be posting, but as he was sitting basically on the same chair I was on, I snapped a few of him.  Cute little freckles, huh, Mom! 


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Love you, T!

And on a wonderful bright happy ending note--Scott and Parker start school on Wednesday!  So excited!  (And yes, I'm a lot more excited than they are!)  Bye bye, summer, thanks for coming!


Clumbsy Cookie said...

I had not noticed that you like those cookies, lol! Flours in Europe are a bit different, but we do have equivalents to bread, cake and AP, although I had to do a little research on flour strengh when I started baking with american recipes. What I've heared from Alton Brown (who I trust) is that AP flour is half strong (bread) and soft (cake), so if in the recipe they call for the exact same quantity of each I can't see why you shouldn't substitute.
Anyway today on Tastespotting they have a lego cake, and clicking on the article you'll see the same mold as yours. Hope the cupcakes work better.
Have fun with last day of school break!

Judy said...

Katrina - thanks for all your hard work in comparing results for these cookies. I want to do the same for peanut butter cookies, but more of a throw-down. I'm waiting for my sister to visit, as an excuse for making the King Arthur, old-fashioned and my fave, Lalee's. Since my sister and brother-in-law are peanut butter cookie nuts, we'll all be voting on the best one, and I'll post the photos and results. Of course, I'm convinced my Lalee's will win, but we will see. In the meantime, I'm still on my chocolate and peanut butter free diet and losing slowly but steadily. By the time they come, I'll be able to indulge, with reserve of course.

RecipeGirl said...

I'm so excited for school to start too!!!

Your cookies look great. It makes me want to go into the kitchen right now and bake some chocolate chip cookies!!

Leslie said...

Love the experiment. They do look pretty much the same...But I do like to put my dough in the fridge for a while before I bake!
Thanks for your visit to my blog..stop by and visit anytime!

Kevin said...

Those chocolate chip cookies look really good. I always enjoy experimenting with ccc's.

Pamela said...

Sam does not look very happy about this new arrangement! He doesn't look like he's giving up, though. Great picture of Taylor! Love his freckles and his baby blues!