My FAVORITE Chocolate Chip Cookie

September 21, 2008 – Comments (123)

I have experimented with countless recipes searching for that perfect chocolate chip cookie. The characteristics of the perfect cookie are a very personal matter, and here are my preferences:

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texture: chewy w. medium thickness — everyone has their preference, and this is mine!

chocolate to cookie ratio: 50/50 — I really enjoy having a lot of chocolate in every bite

chips vs. chunks: chunks — I like sizeable pieces of chocolate in my cookie.

type of chocolate: bittersweet — I like using Valrhona 61% extra bitter

nuts or other add-ins: NONE!!

With the above criteria in mind, this recipe is the closest I’ve come to experiencing CCC perfection. It’s the “not so secret” secret recipe from Jacque Torres, and I’m sure many of you have read about this or already tried this at home. I’ve been making this recipe countless times, and have found that the following tips make this cookie absolutely perfect:

- Don’t substitute the pastry and bread flours w. AP flour. I really believe that the combination of the pastry and bread flours give the cookie a nice slightly crunchy exterior giving way to a really tender middle.

- Hand chopped chocolate chunks, NOT premade chips – I will purchase a hunk of the best bittersweet chocolate that I can afford and hand cut them into chunks. The easiest method to chop a block of chocolate: nuke the block at 50% power for a few seconds, no more. It softens the chocolate just enough. Then take a large kitchen knife and chop away! Your effort will be rewarded with really nice ribbons of melted chocolate throughout the cookie.

- Chill the cookie dough at least 24 hours (I let my dough sit anywhere from 2-3 days) before baking. This is not for taste reasons that were recently written about in an article from NY Times (god forbid we’re aging cookie dough…let’s leave that for wine and cheese). IMHO, refrigeration makes a difference with the look and texture. I think the dough sets in a way so when you bake the cookies, you end up with the lovely wrinkles and folds as the balls of dough spread and bake. Until I encounter another recipe that will move mountains, I think have finally found my perfect chocolate chip cookie!

I would love to hear about your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, so do share! :)

Jacques Torres’ Secret Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
Makes twenty-six 5-inch cookies or 8 1/2 dozen 1 1/4-inch cookies

1 pound unsalted butter
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
2 1/4 cups packed light-brown sugar
4 large eggs
3 cups plus 2 tablespoons pastry flour
3 cups bread flour
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 pounds bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats; set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars.
- Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
- Reduce speed to low and add both flours, baking powder, baking soda, vanilla, and chocolate; mix until well combined.
- Using a 4-ounce scoop for larger cookies or a 1-ounce scoop for smaller cookies, scoop cookie dough onto prepared baking sheets, about 2 inches apart.
- Bake until lightly browned, but still soft, about 20 minutes for larger cookies and about 15 minutes for smaller cookies.
- Cool slightly on baking sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

123 Responses to My FAVORITE Chocolate Chip Cookie

  1. Beatrice says:

    How many cookies does this batch yeild?

  2. Mary says:

    Is it really 1 tablespoon of salt?

  3. Adrienne says:

    Is there a significant difference between white and whole wheat pastry flour? The recipe calls for ‘pastry flour’ – which I assume to be regular white. The thing is, I can’t find it anywhere, just whole wheat. What do you think? Thanks!!

    • Gail says:

      Pastry flour has less gluten so it turns out a less tough end product. Here is a statement from
      Cake flour is typically 7-9% protein; pastry, or cookie, ~9-10%; all purpose, 10-12%, bread, 12.5-13.5%, clear and high gluten, 14-15%; gluten “flour” (actually refined gluten), 45%. The protein consists of ~80% gluten, and the gluten of cake flour is weakest, and bread and high gluten flour the strongest, and the intermediate ones increasingly stronger. Gluten is more of less made up of equal parts of gliadin and glutenin.

      Gluten strength definition and measurement are not entirely well understood, even by cereal chemists. Generally, you want the most protein and strongest gluten for bagels and breads that also use other poor or non-gluten flours such as rye or oat; moderately strong for all wheat bread; weaker for pastries and cookies; still weaker for cakes such as pound cakes; yet still weaker for “high-ratio,” rich cakes; and weakest for angel food cakes. One of the quality tests for soft wheat flour is the “cookie spread test, which is one measure of this. There are also farinographs, elastographs, and whatnot to further attempt to measure this elusive property. Fortunately, with most flours, increasing protein content goes along with increasing gluten strength.
      Hope this helps. I use soft as silk cake flour for a pastry flour.

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  6. Ashley says:

    These cookies look sooo delicious. Can’t wait to try out the recipe.

  7. Kristin Betenson says:

    I am making these right now and already just the dough seems so much better than any other cookie dough I have had. I did decide to use semi sweet chocolate instead of bittersweet, cause I dont care for bitter sweet. Going to bake the cookies soon. Hoping it all turns out alright.

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  9. Trina says:

    OMG!! These cookies are awesome. Simple and easy directions to follow. (Except for the refrigeration – I wanted to bake them) lol But I resisted and waited..

  10. Cheryl says:

    where do you buy the Valrhona chocolate you recommend?

  11. donna says:

    Oh my goodness. I’m not sure how big you made these cookies but I cut the recipe In half and used a big ice cream scoop and my cookies were huge and I must have made at least 20!. Oh and so everyone knows I couldn’t find the pastry flour so I used all purpose only and they turned out really good!

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