It’s that time again, when we turn to our vintage cookbook and create something new, and hopefully spectacular. This month, after a year of working our way through the old one, Christianna has selected a new book.
We have moved on to The Second Ford Treasury of Favorite Recipes From Famous Eating Place. How’s that for a mouthful? And, we’re remaking a total classic, the Toll House Cookie. Of course, my mind went wickedly wild at first. I have pushed the envelope on some of these vintage recipe swaps- making donut vodka during the potato donuts, sopapillas with drunken berries during the taffy apple swap and a bacon and escarole custard to revamp hot slaw.
This time, I thought about doing frozen cookie dough truffles, but then I remembered last year when I made candy cane truffles. I was cursing my friends, my kitchen, my chocolate, and the world. NO TRUFFLES! Then I thought about a bacon, bourbon, and chocolate chip cake. While I still might keep that cake in my back pocket, I remembered that this is cookie season. If we’re remaking the classing Toll House cookie, I’m sticking with a cookie.
The question is, how do you improve upon a chocolate chip cookie? Bacon? Yes, and I almost went there. But then, my brain went to brown butter- the best liquid aside from vintage champagne FACT- not opinion. Of course brown butter alone does not a cookie make- fleur de sel? A quick search showed that theses had sooo been done. So, I reached a little deeper- (actually I walked over to my open panty) and pulled out smoked sea salt and mesquite flour. What resulted is a truly magical chocolate chip cookie.
I hope you’ll enjoy it. I hope you’ll eat a bunch. I hope you’ll bake them for someone you love. Eat them with a glass of milk. Even better? Eat them with a glass of carmel-tinged Belgian Beer. Even better than that, eat them with someone you like a whole lot. Speaking of liking a whole lot, please check out my fellow swappers; the list is below!
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter- browned, then chilled
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup white wheat flour
- ¼ cup mesquite flour
- 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon smoked sea salt + more for springing
- 1 1/4 cups chocolate (I used a mix of 72% and 61%) chopped into varying sized pieces
- To make brown butter, cut butter into chunks, and heat in a heavy stainless steel skillet over medium heat. It will bubble and spit, and make lots of noise. Don’t be afraid, but do be patient. Eventually, your butter will turn light golden brown, and then voila, dark amber, nutty brown. That’s right where you want it.
- Pour your brown butter (plus all the good brown bits from the pan) into a bowl and pop into the freezer for at least 15 minutes. It needs to firm up so you can scoop it with a spoon.
- Adjust the oven rack to the top 1/3 of the oven and preheat to 350º .
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Beat the sugars and butter together until smooth. Mix in the egg, vanilla, and baking soda.
- Stir together the flours and salt, then mix them into the batter.
- Add chocolate chunks
- Scoop the cookie dough into balls and place 9 balls on each of the baking sheets.
- Freeze cookie dough balls on cookie sheet for at least 15 minutes.
- Bake for 12 minutes or until light golden brown
- Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle hot cookies with smoked sea salt. Allow to cool on cookie sheet for five minutes, then transfer to cool completely on a wire rack.