Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Chocolate Chip Cookies from Wishes and Dishes - Levain Bakery copycat

Levain Bakery copycat Chocolate Chip Cookies - made dough July 30, 2017 from Wishes and Dishes
I go through periods of clearing out the baking shelves in my pantry. Which means, I try to use up the ingredients I have without buying more so I can actually empty the shelves once in awhile. It’s a good practice so your ingredients are rotated through and used up properly and nothing’s allowed to go past its expiration date. For me, even though I bake quite often, it’s harder than it sounds because I’m a baking ingredient hoarder. I hate to run out of anything because you never know when the baking gods will smite me and propel me into the kitchen to bake something. In that mood, I don’t want to be out of anything.
What I tend to have a good amount of is – no surprise – chocolate. In multiple forms. I have unsweetened chocolate (big bag of Scharffenberger baking squares), semisweet chocolate chips (Costco-sized Tollhouse morsels), multiple packs of milk chocolate chips (Ghirardelli, Guittard, Nestle), bittersweet chocolate bars (Valrhona and Lindt), cocoa powder (my beloved Pernigotti) and a slab of Trader Joe’s Pound Plus milk chocolate. The latter is what I wanted to use up for this recipe.
Since I don’t believe in small or bite-sized chocolate chip cookies (who does??), I planned on making behemoth cookies (think 1/3 cup measure per cookie) so it seemed suitable to cut up the milk chocolate slab into chunks and use it for this recipe. Big chunks to go with big cookies, I say.
This is another Levain Bakery copycat but I have to admit mine didn’t come out like the original blog’s or like Levain’s. For one thing, mine spread too much. They still stayed thick but they were not mounded-chubby thick. I’m not sure why unless my butter got too warm as I was a trifle late in mixing it and the dough was a bit soft. So even though I froze the dough and baked from frozen dough, these still spread. They also, to my sorrow, were too sweet. I don’t say that often and I don’t know if my taste buds were off but rest assured, I tried two different cookies on two different baking days and the results were the same: sweeeeeeet. Which is a little odd because the recipe ingredients were not out of whack with other copycats and other chocolate chip cookies in general. I didn’t miscount the amount of sugar I added either. So it could be my taste buds had had enough sugar for the moment (you don’t know how much that thought fills me with horror. And denial).
However, I baked the rest of the cookies off for friends I met for dinner one night and distributed them via treat bags for them and their families and they loved them. I either have really polite, well-manned friends (totally possible) or it was just me (also possible). In either case, if I make this recipe again, I would probably go with semisweet or dark chocolate chips instead of milk chocolate to balance some of the sweetness.
1 cup cold butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup turbinado sugar (or can substitute 1/4 cup granulated sugar)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups chocolate chips or chunks
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.
  2. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until just combined after each addition. Mix in vanilla.
  3. Stir in flours, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Mix until just combined; do not overmix. Fold in chocolate chips or chunks.
  4. Portion into large dough balls and flatten slightly into thick discs. Cover and chill or freeze for several hours or overnight.
  5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 410 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and evenly space dough discs, giving them room to spread. 
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until edges are golden brown and middles no longer look raw. Remove from oven and let cool on baking sheet for 5-10 minutes until set. Remove to wire racks until cooled completely.

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