Friday, March 21, 2014

Deep Dish Brown Butter Chocolate Chunk Pizookie

Deep Dish Brown Butter Chocolate Chunk Pizookie - made March 14, 2014, recipe modified from Damn Delicious
You ever have one of those weeks when, by the time you've made it to the end, you're so wrung out that all your good intentions of eating healthy to nourish your body, working out for mental well being, and going into zen mode to refresh your spirit gets drowned out by the call of "screw this, I want a warm chocolate chip cookie with ice cream. Now." Right? Welcome to last Friday.
Only it was such a week that I upped the ante. A normal chocolate chip cookie just wasn't going to cut it. In fact, even chocolate chips weren't going to do. This called for chocolate chunks. I had a slab of milk chocolate my parents had brought back from a trip (yup, I'd much rather have that as a "souvenir" than a t-shirt or a mug, thanks) which I chopped into generous-sized chunks. I wasn't messing around. And I not only raised the stakes to go with a chocolate chunk pizookie but I made it a deep dish brown butter chocolate chunk pizookie. In a size and of a thickness guaranteed to push me beyond comfortable ecstasy straight to semi-consciousness. For the first few bites anyway. As they say on Sesame Street, this is a sometime food.
Normally, pizookies are individual sized and I'd bake them off in small ramekins. This time I went for broke and spread all of the dough into my 8-inch cast iron skillet. Which turned out to yield a pizookie large enough to feed me and 18 of my closest friends. I added the scoops of ice cream and drizzles of warm nutella on top for picture taking purposes but since my 18 closest friends didn't happen to be around when I took this out of the oven, I ended up only taking a few bites.
Which were actually pretty satisfying enough. My only mistake was, because the cookie turned out to be so thick, I didn't bake it long enough. Which I didn't discover until I'd already put the ice cream on top and took a few bites. The outer edges were fine; they were perfect as a matter of fact, warm and sumptuous. But the inner circle and the middle were too gooey, especially when warm.
Nothing left to do except scrape the ice cream off to eat separately and put the skillet back in the oven. I baked it off a little longer but after the second baking, my emotional eating crisis had passed or been stuffed into submission with those first few bites so I left the skillet pizookie for the next day.
Which actually turned out to be even better. By then it had cooled to room temperature, the texture wasn't mushy or gooey, more like "fudgy". And the brown butter flavor was more prominent. Much as I like warm cookies topped with ice cream, I have to admit, this was better at room temperature without the ice cream. I think it was because, in the skillet, the pizookie was too thick so the cookie was mushy/gooey when warm. If I had baked less of it in smaller ramekins like I usually do, it would've baked more evenly and thoroughly all around so it wouldn't have been as mushy. And in small amounts, a little gooey isn't a bad thing.
I had a hard time getting a clear picture of the inside, both due to the lighting at that time of day/almost evening when I made this but also from the deepness of the pan. But you can see a hint of the mushiness below. Regardless, this was a good cookie recipe. I'd advocate baking it in smaller portions; then you can enjoy it warm or room temperature, your choice. I took the cooled cookie, broke it into smaller chunks and placed them in a ziploc bag in my freezer. Next time I'm having an emotional eating crisis, I know what to reach for.
1 7/8 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
14 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 cup chocolate chunks
Vanilla ice cream
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly coat an 8-inch cast iron skillet with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
  3. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, whisking constantly, until the foam subsides and the butter begins to turn a golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  4. Whisk in sugars and vanilla until well combined. Whisk in egg and egg yolk until well combined. Add flour mixture, beating just until incorporated. Gently fold in chocolate chunks.
  5. Pour mixture into skillet. Place into oven and bake until edges are golden brown but center is still moist, about 20-25 minutes (check at 15 minutes).
  6. Serve lukewarm, topped with ice cream.

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