It’s Week 4 of 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies. You might be thinking that seeing just another chocolate chip cookie is boring, been there, done that. Well, here’s the thing—Chocolate Chip Cookies really are probably my favorite cookie to make and give away. They are easy (I know this particular recipe by heart) and they are chocolate and taste great! What’s not to love?
So I believe that some kind of chocolate chip cookie should always adorn a Christmas cookie tray. But here’s what I like to do even more sometimes, especially with this particular recipe, which has been my go-to chocolate chip cookie for a couple years now. I was even asked to figure out a way to ship frozen cookie dough once we left Kansas and start a business selling just these cookies. The person who made that suggestion wasn’t kidding, they would really miss my cookies, but I have yet to figure out a way to make that work and be profitable. Whenever I make these cookies, I am always asked for the recipe and told these are the best chocolate chip cookies they’ve had. Brag, brag, blah, blah, blah. I have adapted this recipe enough that I do call it mine, but the true credit for it goes to Jacques Torres. I believe that his use of cake flour and bread flour instead of regular all purpose flour and thinner (than chips) good quality dark chocolate disks are what set this recipe apart from other chocolate chip cookies. So I make these often. The family loves them. And I often have cookie dough balls frozen and ready to go for all kinds of occasions or if I just need to give someone a few as a gift or thank you.
Sometimes during the holidays, people often feel like they just couldn’t eat another cookie, candy, etc. So another thing I’ve done in the past is give people a tub of frozen cookie dough balls and a note letting them know how to bake them and that they can save them for a time when they NEED a treat.
Stack another layer on top with waxed paper in between (the cookie dough is already frozen). I like to put another five on top of the eight and give a baker’s dozen.
Finally, if you really don’t feel like scooping cookie dough balls out onto a wax paper lined baking sheet and freezing them for gifts, I’ve also done it by just forming the dough into a log and freezing it. You can give the gift also with a note letting someone know they can thaw, scoop and bake whenever they’d like. I like to give the cookie dough log on a cute, festive tray.
After reminding myself that I’ve done this in the past, I will for sure be doing this for some of the holiday gifts I plan to give this year. You can certainly make any other kind of cookie frozen ahead as well. As much as I love all the holiday goodies, I would love having the options to save some for later.
My Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies ;), by Katrina, Baking and Boys!, adapted from Jacques Torres
8 ½ ounces cake flour (2 cups minus 2 tablespoons) (lightly spooned into the measuring cup and swept level with a knife)
8 ½ ounces bread flour (1 and 2/3 cups) (lightly spooned and swept)
1 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 ½ teaspoons coarse salt
2 ½ sticks (1 ¼ cups) unsalted butter, room temperature
10 ounces (1 ¼ cups) light brown sugar
8 ounces (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 ¼ pounds chocolate chips or chopped chocolate (Ghirardelli 60% cacao chips are what I always use, which is what makes these cookies so good)
Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl with a wire whisk. Set aside.
In bowl of electric mixer, cream together butter and sugars until very light, about five minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. With mixer on low, add dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Stir in chocolate chips with rubber spatula. Optional--Put dough in a plastic container and refrigerate for at least a couple hours, but ideally 24 to 36 hours! (You think it won’t make a difference, but it’s really good! Although, I often only chill for a couple hours and these are still excellent cookies. Though it is not necessary to chill the dough at all—make, bake and eat!)
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and scoop dough into balls on sheet. Bake 9-15 minutes depending on size. ½ ounce cookies (small) baked 9 minutes. Regular sized cookies are about 1 ½ ounces and baked 11-13 minutes. (Made 9 ½ dozen ½ ounce cookies!) 2-3 oz. cookies are huge and delicious and more like NYT.