I am becoming a chocolate snob – ok, maybe I am already a chocolate snob, but I am finally able to admit it. This has been a long time coming – it probably started when I was in high school, and visited England for the first time. We had a few hours free, and I ventured to Harrod’s and went to the Food Halls. Yes, at 14 – I was already obsessed with visiting special food places when I travelled. Chocolate was just about the only thing I could afford, so I bought some Cadbury bars…wow, they really put Hershey’s to shame. Now, at that point in my life, milk chocolate was all I really enjoyed, and even that was a stretch, but I would take a Cadbury bar any day of the week.
I have told the story already about the chocolate when I studied in France during college – and my friends and I found the Cote D’Or factory in Brussels – I swear we smelled our way to that pot of gold. Still, my favorite chocolate in Europe was Lindt. I was so excited when I found some Lindt bars in the US, only to discover that they don’t export the same quality chocolate as they have in Europe.
For some reason, even though I knew what good chocolate tasted like – I continued to use Nestle’s chocolate chips when I made cookies. When I first moved to Seattle, a friend of mine asked if I wanted to share a CostCo sized Nestle bag of chips – of course I couldn’t say no – and much to my disbelief, it took no time at all to go through all those chips. It only took a few times of sharing before I realized I had to start buying my own bag. And would you believe that I only baked with these? No, they were not getting eaten any other way. It was only recently that I stopped buying the big bag at Costco – that was when I discovered the dark chocolate chunks I found at Whole Foods – this was real chocolate – real dark chocolate. Dark chocolate that I have begun to really love. And now I can’t go back…
I found this recipe in Bon Appetit and I loved how you used good quality chocolate and chopping it coarsely. That is definitely the way to do it. Not only are the big chunks better, the smaller chunks really get integrated into the batter. The salt on these cookies were the best part. I swear these were some of the best cookies I have made in a while. They didn’t rise as much as I had expected (probably because of the type of butter I used), but they were still amazing.
Whether you are a chocolate snob or not, you will love these cookies – and if you are just starting out on the chocolate road of life – go ahead and use any type you want – even Nestlé’s will make a great cookie. Just don’t blame me if you happen to use some good quality chips for this batch, and then you can’t go back. Not only is it an expensive habit…it is hard work chopping up those delicious bars!
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (do not exceed 72% cacao), coarsely chopped
- Maldon or other flaky sea salt
Place racks in upper and lower thirds of oven and preheat to 375°. Whisk flour, baking powder, kosher salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl; set aside.
Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, brown sugar, sugar, and powdered sugar until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Add egg yolks, egg, and vanilla. Beat, occasionally scraping down the sides of the bowl, until mixture is pale and fluffy, 4-5 minutes. Reduce mixer speed to low; slowly add dry ingredients, mixing just to blend. Using a spatula, fold in chocolate.
Spoon rounded tablespoonfuls of cookie dough onto 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets, spacing 1-inch apart. Sprinkle cookies with sea salt.
Bake cookies, rotating sheets halfway through, until just golden brown around the edges, 10-12 minutes (the cookies will firm up as they cool). Let cool slightly on baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks; let cool completely. DO AHEAD: Cookies can be made 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.
For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, please click here: Salty Chocolate Chunk Cookies