Ok, this is it. This is THE chocolate chip cookie recipe. And I know I've said that before. A few months ago I was boasting about this cookie, but you see that was before I tried brown butter! Now there's no going back. How do I know this is one? Because I have no desire to keep trying chocolate chip cookie recipes anymore. I have no little voice in the back of my head saying "this one is really good, but maybe there's a better one out there."
This is essentially the infamous New York Times chocolate chip cookie recipe, but with brown butter instead of regular butter. Thank you, Blue Ridge Baker for this amazing idea. It basically combines the NY Times recipe with the Cook's Illustrated method for using brown butter. If you've never had brown butter before, then get yourself in the kitchen right now and make something with brown butter because there are no words to describe its wonder (but I'll try anyway). It gives the cookies such a depth of flavor. It creates this really aromatic, caramel/toffee background. You taste it immediately when you bite into the cookie, but it's not overpowering, it's just perfect.
This was the first thing I've made with brown butter, and to be completely honest I think I could've browned the butter a little more but I was scared of burning it, so this may be more like a light brown butter chocolate chip cookie. All I know is that is head and shoulders above any other cookie recipe I've tried. (Although, my previous favorite cookie will still have it's place when I need to throw together a cookie quickly). This recipe is a little demanding of your time but sooooooooo worth it. First it requires browning the butter. Then, it requires letting the brown butter and sugars sit for a few minutes. Then, after the dough is finished, there's the dreaded 24 hours of waiting while it rests in the fridge.
I stayed pretty true to the NY Times recipe and used 2 kinds of flour: cake and bread, because I happened to have them both on hand. Blue Ridge Baker used All Purpose flour and clearly loved her cookies as much as I loved mine, so that should work fine too. She also cut the recipe in half so if you are looking for a smaller batch of cookies, head over there and check our her recipe. But seriously, don't cut the recipe in half. You'll want every single one of these! I plan on making these cookies again and possibly incorporating 2 changes. 1) I may use dark brown sugar per the Cook's Illustrated recipe, just for curiosity sake. 2) I may add an extra egg yolk. This is a method I learned from Alton Brown's "The Chewy" in order to help it retain its chewiness. But as it stands, this is the best cookie I've ever eaten. Enjoy!
Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from NY Times and Blue Ridge Baker
- 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
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
- 2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted brown 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 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate chopped into chip size pieces
- Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt, set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine sugars. Pour hot brown butter over sugars, and without stirring, place in refrigerator to cool the butter to room temperature. Attach bowl to mixer and on medium speed, beat until light in color and fluffy. If butter isn't becoming pale, it isn't cool enough. Pop it back in the fridge for a few more minutes and try again.
- When butter mixture is desired consistency, add egg and beat for 30 seconds. Stir in vanilla. Add dry ingredients, and mix until just incorporated. Stir in chocolate. Form dough into a log and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment. Form dough into balls a little over an inch in diameter, or 1.5 ounces. Place balls at least 2" apart on baking sheet, and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Bake for about 12 - 15 minutes, or until slightly puffy, dry on top and tinged with golden.
- Let stand on baking sheet for about 1 - 3 minutes, then move to a cooling rack to cool completely.