I was in the mood for some easy comfort food after that last, complicated concoction so I turned immediately to the old staple: chocolate chip cookies. I recently got The Dessert Bible by Christopher Kimball, trusting the author as a contributer to Cook's Illustrated and, subsequently, The Best Recipe cookbook. Yeah. Not a great idea. I guess you never know about a recipe until you try it. His idea of the "best" chocolate chip cookie was bland, flour-y and tasteless. They quickly became Trash Cookies.
I compared his recipe to The Best Recipe and saw immediately he'd changed the fat (butter) content by half which explained why the ratio of flour was so off. The Best Recipe cookbook merely modifies the tried and true Tollhouse recipe (which, I agree, isn't perfect). Their modifications resulted in a perfectly shaped, textured and tasty cookie. Once again, The Best Recipe comes through. I really shouldn't be surprised anymore but any time I make something that comes out right, I really really am.
TRADITIONAL CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Source: The Best Recipe
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup light or dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon water
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
1. Adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk flour, salt and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.
2. Either by hand or with electric mixer, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes with mixer set at medium speed. Scrape sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Add eggs, vanilla and water. Beat until combined, about 40 seconds. Scrape sides of bowl.
3. Add dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined, 15 to 20 seconds. Add chocolate chips and nuts and stir until combined.
4. Drop batter by tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheets, spacing pieces of dough about 1 inch apart. Bake, reversing position of cookie sheets halfway through baking (from top to bottom and front to back), until cookies are light golden brown and outer edges begin to crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool cookies on sheets for 1 to 2 minutes before transferring to cooling racks with wide spatula.