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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Triple Chocolate Cookies

I found this cookie recipe when flipping through a stack of my Cook's Illustrated magazines.  I knew I had to make them as soon as I saw them.  Like all Cook's Illustrated recipes, it was perfect.  Their recipes often involve steps that seem unnecessary at the time, but when you read the narrative and it is explained to you why included these steps you understand and take the extra time to make it right.  I have never had a recipe of theirs not turn out.  I may not like the particular combination of flavors, and might change up seasonings here or there, but the recipes pretty much always turn out flawless.  I do wish the same could be said for my pictures, but these were too good not to share because of a not-so-great picture.  The key is the three types of chocolate -- the melted chocolate in the dough, the cocoa powder and then the chips that are added in as well.  These cookies are ginormous.  You use an ice cream scoop to portion them out, and they spread quite a bit.  They really remind me of they kind you would buy at a bakery or in a store, giant and crispy on the edges but chewy in the middle. 

I am submitting this recipe to the Holiday Recipe Exchange hosted by Good Life Eats and My Baking Addiction to have a chance to win a gift basket from Scharffen Berger Chocolate, which actually is the brand I used when making these cookies.  Zach had gone to visit his brother in Hershey, Pennslyvania and brought me back several bars of their high quality chocolate for baking.  I'd love to win more for use in future recipes!  Come join the fun at the My Baking Addiction and GoodLife Eats Holiday Recipe Exchange sponsored by Scharffen Berger.

Triple Chocolate Cookies
Cook's Illustrated, September/October 1999

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour 
1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
16 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips 
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons instant coffee powder
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar

  • Sift first four ingredients together into a medium bowl and set aside.
  • Set up either a double boiler, or a medium pot filled with 3-4 inches of water with a metal bowl that will fit in the pot without touching the water.  Melt the chopped chocolate in the bowl, stirring until smooth.   Remove from heat and turn off burner.  
  • In a small bowl, beat the egg and vanilla together.  Sprinkle the coffee powder on top.  Set aside.
  • Using a stand mixer, beat butter until smooth and creamy, about 10 seconds.  Add in sugars and beat about one minute, mixture will still look granular.  Reduce speed to low and slowly add in egg/vanilla/coffee powder mixture.  Beat until incorporated, about another minute.  Add melted chocolate and additional chips in steady stream and beat another minute.  
  • Stop mixer and scrape bottom and sides of bowl.  Turn mixer on low and slowly add flour mixture.  Beat until just combined, do not overmix.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, until fudge-like.  
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cookie sheets with parchment (the parchment plays a key role later -- don't use a silpat!).  Scoop cookies onto cookie sheet using 1 3/4 inch ice cream scoop.  Leave 2, even 3, inches between each ball of dough. 
  • Bake for 10 minutes, reversing the cookie sheets halfway through baking.  The centers of the cookies will still be very soft-looking.  Cool cookies on sheets 10 minutes, then slide the parchment off the cookie sheet and onto the cooling rack.  Cover pans with new parchment and bake next set of cookies.  Once cookies are completely cooled, remove from parchment. 

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