Friday, November 25, 2005

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

These cookies were inspired by some cookies that found on the bargain shelf at Berkeley Bowl (the best grocery store on the West Coast of the U.S., IMHO). The goal was something with good oatmeal flavor, big chunks of chocolate, and a basic heartiness (but not too hearty--these are cookies, after all!). I created the recipe many years ago (1994 or 1995), and have baked them many times since and they remain one of my "top 10" cookie recipes.


Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Ingredients
1 stick butter (4 oz.)
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar

1 egg
1 t. vanilla extract

1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
3/4 cup unbleached white flour
1/4 cup wheat germ
1 cup quick oats
1/2 cup rolled oats (the non-quick variety)

3 ounces dark chocolate
2 ounces milk chocolate
1/2 cup walnuts, pecans, cashews, or almonds, coarsely chopped

(Unit conversion page)


Method
Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Mix the dry ingredients (but not the chocolate) together in a bowl.

Chop the dark and milk chocolate into pieces that are slightly larger than standard chocolate chips. It is not easy to do this; don't worry if the pieces are randomly sized, that is one of the charms of these cookies (a.k.a. chocolatey randomness).

Combine the butter and sugars in a bowl. If using a stand mixer, use the paddle attachment. Beat together until the mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla.

Add the dry ingredients to the bowl, and mix together on low speed until the dough is mixed. Add the chocolate and nuts, and mix on low speed for a short time to combine.

Bake for 10-15 minutes on greased or lined cookie sheets. After removing sheets from the oven, let the cookies cool for a few minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.

Variations: Replace nuts with dried fruit (cherries are especially good). Adjust the oatmeal ratios.



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