Saturday, February 25, 2017

Dark Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies - Levain Bakery copycat #2 from Kirbie Cravings

Dark Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies - made dough January 28, 2017, modified from Kirbie Cravings (same as Modern Honey recipe)
I'm dwelling on a new riff of an old obsession. Yes, I'm still fixated on Levain Bakery cookies. I think I've got the chocolate chip ones out of my system (for now) as I've come to realize that while I do like the original Levain Bakery chocolate chip cookies, some of the copycat recipes I've tried out have also been excellent and satisfy my chocolate chip cookie sweet tooth (yes, I have one of those). So I don't feel the need to make an exact Levain copycat because there are quite a number of acceptable substitutes out there. thing I realized from my visit(s) to the original Levain Bakery is how much I loved their chocolate chocolate chip cookie. The crisp outside, the rich dense fudginess of the inside that's like eating baked fudge? Nirvana. And nirvana is hard to replicate. However, never let it be said I back down from a challenge, at least not while I'm obsessed. So you're going to see more copycat recipes for their fudgy chocolate chocolate cookie in the coming weeks (months?).
Pinterest, of course, was the logical starting point as yes, they have copycat recipes for Levain's chocolate chocolate cookie, although not as many as I'd like. And the same one keeps getting repinned. I'd tried one some months ago before I even went to Levain and that turned out well but not quite like the real thing. This copycat from Kirbie's Cravings seemed quite popular and looked amazing on her site. It's the exact same recipe I found on Modern Honey as well. So that became attempt #2.
I thought it was pretty good. The picture above shows the inside while it was still a bit warm so the gooey-ness is prominent. Chocolate chocolate cookies are one of the few cookies I recommend eating at room temperature. That gives the chocolate time to set and it'll still be fudgy without being too mushy. You'll also get the full flavor of the chocolate. The recipe calls for baking the cookies at 410 degrees. Depending on your oven, that might be a bit hot. When I bake chocolate chip cookies over 375 degrees in mine, the chips tend to burn slightly before the cookie is done enough to be taken out. I put the baking sheet in at 375 while the oven is still preheating, let it hit 410, keep it there for 2-3 minutes then bring the oven temp back down to 375 to finish baking.
The picture below gives you an idea of what I mean about a room temperature texture as that was taken well after the cookies had cooled and the chocolate had set. As chocolate chocolate chip cookies go, this was tasty. Be sure you use a dark, high quality cocoa to get the richness of the chocolate flavor. But it's not quite a Levain Bakery cookie because once the cookies had cooled, the crisp-ness of the outside softened. The taste was still good and was rich but not quite the baked-fudge texture of the Levain original which is one of the things I loved so much about it. It was just a bit more "light" in texture than the dense fudginess of the Levain Bakery original. On to the next attempt and another copycat recipe for me.
1 cup unsalted cold butter, cut into cubes
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Pernigotti cocoa)
1 cup cake flour
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips and/or chunks (I used half semisweet, half milk chocolate chips)
  1. In a mixing bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, dark brown sugar and granulated sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  2. Whisk together cocoa powder, cake flour, all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Add to mixing bowl on lowest speed, mixing until just combined. Do not overmix. Fold in chocolate chips or chunks.
  3. Portion into generous 4-ounce dough balls, cover and chill for 15 minutes or longer.
  4. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 410 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and evenly space chilled dough balls. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until surface is dry and cookies look almost set. Let cool for a few minutes on baking sheet then remove to wire cooling racks to cool completely.

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