When it comes to sweets, I may be an ice cream enthusiast, a cupcake connoisseur and the ultimate authority on who has the best doughnuts (by the way, it’s Pick ‘n’ Save). One thing I am not is a fancy, or even disciplined, baker.
Precise measuring? Who needs it?
Fancy chocolate? Nestle’s semi-sweet chunks will do fine, thank you very much.
Brownies not cooked in the center? Eat the corners instead.
All these flippant habits seem to make me an unsuccessful baker, and I’d agree. I’ve overcooked cupcakes, pancakes and any other type of cake more times than I care to count.
But, I’ve found a recipe that even I, with all my carefree habits, can transform into a truly magical baking (and eating) experience.
Everyone’s favorite sniff-obsessed, spoon-slinging, brightness-loving supertaster, Chris Morocco has developed the holy grail of chocolate chip cookies recipes. The Bon Appetit Food Director turned YouTube personality painstakingly crafted this recipe as one of “BA’s Best”, the magazine’s quintessential recipes.
Now, I’ll walk you through how you can make these delectable treats without all the fuss (and by fuss, I mean the steps I was too lazy to take).
We’ll start with the ingredients. Chris keeps it fairly simple, and the fanciest thing he calls for is bittersweet chocolate and dark brown sugar. But I didn’t even have those in my pantry. So, I used some old dark chocolate chunks my roommate had eaten out of the bag and light brown sugar, and I also substituted granulated sugar for cane sugar (also my roommate’s). While good ingredients are always the basis of any amazing dish, sometimes swapping things out because you don’t want to walk to the grocery store is fine!
Moving right along, I almost immediately meet another challenge. The recipe calls for brown butter, which is butter that is cooked so that the milk solids darken and create a rich, toasty flavor in whatever you add it to. Now, I had never attempted this before, so I figured I’d just wing it. I added a stick of butter to a saucepan over medium heat, watched it melt and swirl in the pan and continued to stir the butter while scraping the bottom of the pan until it started to brown. While Chris’ recipe says this should take four minutes, I found mine to take upwards of six just to start seeing color. Needless to say, I was terrified I was going to burn the butter, so I stopped cooking it as soon as I saw the hue turn brown. While the butter wasn’t ~properly~ browned, it still introduced a lovely flavor into the cookies.
Another place where I threw caution to the wind was in resting the dough. The recipe says that if the dough is slightly oozy (I liked typing that word as much you liked reading it) to chill it for a few minutes so it can firm up. But, ten minutes in the fridge equals extra ten minutes that I won’t have a fresh-baked cookie in my hand. Be kind to your future, hungry self, and just throw the cookies in the oven even if the dough is a little soft. I can guarantee they’ll still turn out beautifully.
Perhaps the most maddening aspect of baking is waiting painstakingly for your baked goods to cool after they’ve emerged from your oven. All your hard work is staring you down, and the only thing you want to do is devour the entire dozen. Chris says to let the cookies cool on baking sheets, but if your roommate needs the communal baking sheet (because you’ve all decided to bake on the same afternoon, for some reason), transfer them to a plate or another surface. Try not to let them overlap if you can help it, but if not, everything will be fine. Now that all the work is done, enjoy a not-quite-cooled cookie because you deserve it!
These cookies sincerely bring so much joy to my life. I feel like an accomplished baker, I have delicious treats for myself and I get to share them with all my friends! They also brought me a DM from Chris Morocco himself.
Upon baking them for the first time, I posted them on my Instagram story saying I wanted to do the Bon Appétit Test Kitchen gang proud while tagging Chris as a thank you for this incredible recipe. Here’s what I received in response.
This still-unopened (I’m sentimental, sue me) DM makes me smile every time I see it, and it’s all because I baked some cookies!
Recipe Credit: Chris Morocco