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Pimp my cookies - what went "wrong"?

Pimp my cookies - what went "wrong"?
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  • Post #61 - July 27th, 2020, 4:21 pm
    Post #61 - July 27th, 2020, 4:21 pm Post #61 - July 27th, 2020, 4:21 pm
    pairs4life wrote:I am glad you like them. Try the rye one from Milk Street. And then I think Stella Park's take on Tate's. I just had Tate's Oatmeal Raisin which were very good but only crispy and crackly along the edges. The center being far chewier. Are their chocolate chip cookies similar?

    Will do. But before that, I wanted to try the Oatmeal Raisin recipe I've been refining, using the brown butter technique from the ATK recipe. Wow! These are really good . . .

    Image
    Oatmeal Rum-Raisin Cookies w/ Toasted Pecans (brown butter method)

    Crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside and pleasantly dense, with no cakiness. The flavor, with the addition of the brown butter (75% of the total butter used), was on a whole other level. I'm pleased. I'm going to edit the recipe in my files as I made them this time and move on. For my taste, I'm not sure these can be improved upon.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #62 - July 27th, 2020, 4:46 pm
    Post #62 - July 27th, 2020, 4:46 pm Post #62 - July 27th, 2020, 4:46 pm
    The final recipe he comes up with may not be what you are looking for, but this evaluation of what changing one ingredient at a time does (with pictures) is really helpful

    https://sweets.seriouseats.com/2013/12/ ... okies.html

    And hey Xexo - I was THISCLOSE to Salem on Saturday, so LMK next time you are offloading cookies...
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #63 - July 27th, 2020, 7:34 pm
    Post #63 - July 27th, 2020, 7:34 pm Post #63 - July 27th, 2020, 7:34 pm
    leek wrote:And hey Xexo - I was THISCLOSE to Salem on Saturday, so LMK next time you are offloading cookies...
    Will do. You're in Portland, right? I head up there on occasion as well. Not as much as I used to, but if I have spare baked goods and am headed your way, I'll get a hold of you. Enjoy this nice, hot weather.
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #64 - August 1st, 2020, 3:23 pm
    Post #64 - August 1st, 2020, 3:23 pm Post #64 - August 1st, 2020, 3:23 pm
    These are the Serious Eats/Stellar Parks take on Tate's Chocolate Chip Cookies . . .

    Image
    "Tate's-Style" Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Bottom line: these are very excellent. :D And they're very close to my initial objective. They spread a bit more than I expected, which is fine. Next time I'd bake 15 per sheet instead of 20. A few of them spread into each other during but that was a minor issue. They separated easily after they'd cooled off just a bit. They're not entirely crisp but they're crispy around the edges and chewy toward the centers. They will supposedly get more crispier :D as time passes. Great toffee and brown sugar flavor. A really specific but easy to follow recipe.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #65 - August 1st, 2020, 3:43 pm
    Post #65 - August 1st, 2020, 3:43 pm Post #65 - August 1st, 2020, 3:43 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:These are the Serious Eats/Stellar Parks take on Tate's Chocolate Chip Cookies . . .

    Image
    "Tate's-Style" Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Bottom line: these are very excellent. :D And they're very close to my initial objective. They spread a bit more than I expected, which is fine. Next time I'd bake 15 per sheet instead of 20. A few of them spread into each other during but that was a minor issue. They separated easily after they'd cooled off just a bit. They're not entirely crisp but they're crispy around the edges and chewy toward the centers. They will supposedly get more crispier :D as time passes. Great toffee and brown sugar flavor. A really specific but easy to follow recipe.

    =R=
    Very nice Mr. Suburban. Mine came out even thinner than that, but they never crisped up as stated. I like the looks of yours better. Do try Mr. lebovitz's cookies. Those came out crisp for me, but thinner. Hmmm, maybe I need to take the baking stone out of the oven when I bake cookies.

    As an aside, have you identifed Mr. Wiviott's knife in the Coronavirus cooking thread?
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #66 - August 1st, 2020, 7:43 pm
    Post #66 - August 1st, 2020, 7:43 pm Post #66 - August 1st, 2020, 7:43 pm
    Xexo wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:These are the Serious Eats/Stellar Parks take on Tate's Chocolate Chip Cookies . . .

    Image
    "Tate's-Style" Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Bottom line: these are very excellent. :D And they're very close to my initial objective. They spread a bit more than I expected, which is fine. Next time I'd bake 15 per sheet instead of 20. A few of them spread into each other during but that was a minor issue. They separated easily after they'd cooled off just a bit. They're not entirely crisp but they're crispy around the edges and chewy toward the centers. They will supposedly get more crispier :D as time passes. Great toffee and brown sugar flavor. A really specific but easy to follow recipe.

    =R=
    Very nice Mr. Suburban. Mine came out even thinner than that, but they never crisped up as stated. I like the looks of yours better. Do try Mr. lebovitz's cookies. Those came out crisp for me, but thinner. Hmmm, maybe I need to take the baking stone out of the oven when I bake cookies.

    As an aside, have you identifed Mr. Wiviott's knife in the Coronavirus cooking thread?

    Still need to do the latter.

    Just an fyi, I have a baking stone (steel) in my oven that is positioned near the bottom, a few inches below the middle rack -- the rack on which I baked these cookies. I baked them one sheet at a time, rotating the pan 180 degrees about halfway though each bake.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #67 - August 1st, 2020, 9:54 pm
    Post #67 - August 1st, 2020, 9:54 pm Post #67 - August 1st, 2020, 9:54 pm
    Xexo wrote:
    leek wrote:And hey Xexo - I was THISCLOSE to Salem on Saturday, so LMK next time you are offloading cookies...
    Will do. You're in Portland, right? I head up there on occasion as well. Not as much as I used to, but if I have spare baked goods and am headed your way, I'll get a hold of you. Enjoy this nice, hot weather.


    Yes, inner SE, near Ava Gene and Pok Pok. Cool - I will have jam for you. Will PM you my email and phone.
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #68 - August 2nd, 2020, 8:50 am
    Post #68 - August 2nd, 2020, 8:50 am Post #68 - August 2nd, 2020, 8:50 am
    leek wrote:
    Xexo wrote:
    leek wrote:And hey Xexo - I was THISCLOSE to Salem on Saturday, so LMK next time you are offloading cookies...
    Will do. You're in Portland, right? I head up there on occasion as well. Not as much as I used to, but if I have spare baked goods and am headed your way, I'll get a hold of you. Enjoy this nice, hot weather.


    Yes, inner SE, near Ava Gene and Pok Pok. Cool - I will have jam for you. Will PM you my email and phone.
    I swear I replied to this yesterday, but it ain't here. Must have previewed then closed the tab. Getting old is heck. Anyway, PM sent.
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #69 - August 2nd, 2020, 8:53 am
    Post #69 - August 2nd, 2020, 8:53 am Post #69 - August 2nd, 2020, 8:53 am
    Hey Mr. Suburban, maybe you need to use different Chocolate Chips? A Tesla engineer retooled the Chocolate Chip to make it better. Read about it here and here. A 17.6 oz bag for only $30!
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #70 - August 2nd, 2020, 10:55 am
    Post #70 - August 2nd, 2020, 10:55 am Post #70 - August 2nd, 2020, 10:55 am
    Xexo wrote:Hey Mr. Suburban, maybe you need to use different Chocolate Chips? A Tesla engineer retooled the Chocolate Chip to make it better. Read about it here and here. A 17.6 oz bag for only $30!



    They are single-origin discs. That's actually important to me if I can't get fair-trade/organic chocolate. I would buy them.

    If I buy a regular large not tasty chocolate chip cookie from Starbucks it would cost my just under $3. Did I mention it would also be gross?

    Thanks for the heads-up I may give the chips a try.-- LLAP
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #71 - August 2nd, 2020, 12:43 pm
    Post #71 - August 2nd, 2020, 12:43 pm Post #71 - August 2nd, 2020, 12:43 pm
    pairs4life wrote:
    Xexo wrote:Hey Mr. Suburban, maybe you need to use different Chocolate Chips? A Tesla engineer retooled the Chocolate Chip to make it better. Read about it here and here. A 17.6 oz bag for only $30!



    They are single-origin discs. That's actually important to me if I can't get fair-trade/organic chocolate. I would buy them.

    If I buy a regular large not tasty chocolate chip cookie from Starbucks it would cost my just under $3. Did I mention it would also be gross?

    Thanks for the heads-up I may give the chips a try.-- LLAP
    Most welcome. Do let us know when you try them.
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #72 - August 2nd, 2020, 2:29 pm
    Post #72 - August 2nd, 2020, 2:29 pm Post #72 - August 2nd, 2020, 2:29 pm
    pairs4life wrote:They are single-origin discs. That's actually important to me if I can't get fair-trade/organic chocolate. I would buy them.

    Though not unimportant to many of us, that detail is basically a footnote in both the linked pieces. Seems like the focus of the story is their shape and weight, which supposedly make for enhanced cookie-baking and eating. It isn't really made clear in either piece how the separate factors of R&D/production process and origin have contributed to their price. I've seen plenty of fair trade chocolate out there at less than $30/pound, so my guess is that the former -- along with the anticipated customer demographic for this product -- are driving the price.

    I don't think any of the chocolate chips I use are fair-trade. I guess that makes me a bad person. :( I'd love some recommendations, though.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #73 - August 3rd, 2020, 10:52 am
    Post #73 - August 3rd, 2020, 10:52 am Post #73 - August 3rd, 2020, 10:52 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    pairs4life wrote:They are single-origin discs. That's actually important to me if I can't get fair-trade/organic chocolate. I would buy them.

    Though not unimportant to many of us, that detail is basically a footnote in both the linked pieces. Seems like the focus of the story is their shape and weight, which supposedly make for enhanced cookie-baking and eating. It isn't really made clear in either piece how the separate factors of R&D/production process and origin have contributed to their price. I've seen plenty of fair trade chocolate out there at less than $30/pound, so my guess is that the former -- along with the anticipated customer demographic for this product -- are driving the price.

    I don't think any of the chocolate chips I use are fair-trade. I guess that makes me a bad person. :( I'd love some recommendations, though.

    =R=

    Agreed. But I ordered them so will keep you posted.

    I have had success with organic chips at the Dill Pickle Co-Op and nuts.com. I have also hand-chipped chocolate. Aldi's Moser Roth mini-bars are a breeze to chop but they don't have the stabilizers so there's that. I frequently give those mini-bars as "token gifts" b/c they are actually really tasty.
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #74 - August 7th, 2020, 11:13 pm
    Post #74 - August 7th, 2020, 11:13 pm Post #74 - August 7th, 2020, 11:13 pm
    Gypsy Boy wrote:. . . Jacques Torres's recipe . . .
    ronnie_suburban wrote:I never even considered the Toll House recipe because I just assumed that the way the food universe has evolved, there were better ones out there. Maybe I'll give it a try. As for Jacques Torres, it's unlikely to happen. I've had those cookies (baked by a friend) and they are great but the required 24-72 fridge time before baking is a total deal-breaker for me. One great thing about baking cookies is that not much advance planning is required. I can bake them impulsively and can go from wanting them to having them in about an hour. Not even close with the Torres recipe/method.

    And yet, now we wait . . .

    Image
    Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Jacques Torres's Recipe

    The path to knowledge is painful and unpredictable, isn't it? :D Nearly everything I've read about this dough, which I "whipped up" on Friday afternoon, suggests that the ideal time to bake it is 72 hours after it's made. That means that this will be ready to bake on Monday afternoon. Until then, I'll have to suffer through eating what's left of the Stella Parks/Tate's-Style cookies I made last week. Speaking of which . . .

    Xexo wrote:. . . The Tate cookies from Stella Parks at Serious Eats are good, but they didn't stay crisp for me like she said they would.

    For me, they have gotten a bit crispier over the past week but I can't say they've gotten better. In fact, even though I've kept them packed up in a tightly sealed plastic container, the additional days of storage have brought with them some off flavors (especially in the finish) that were definitely not there in the first few days after they were baked. Even though I gave a bunch of the 56-cookie batch away, my guess is that some of these will expire completely before we can eat them. That means that by Monday, when the Torres dough is ready to bake, I could be jonesing! :lol:

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #75 - August 8th, 2020, 3:52 am
    Post #75 - August 8th, 2020, 3:52 am Post #75 - August 8th, 2020, 3:52 am
    Ronnie, I know you mentioned the "instant gratification" factor of cookies, so I'll mention that the aging of the cookie dough made a huge difference for me - it's now tough for me to enjoy cookies without that rest period (I typically do 3-5 days.) I'm very curious to see if you notice the difference.

    I will typically also make them in large batches, and freeze the portioned dough, so I can have on-demand, warm chocolate chip cookies.
    Katherine

    Everyone has a price: mine is chocolate.
  • Post #76 - August 8th, 2020, 9:51 am
    Post #76 - August 8th, 2020, 9:51 am Post #76 - August 8th, 2020, 9:51 am
    Katherine_84f wrote:Ronnie, I know you mentioned the "instant gratification" factor of cookies, so I'll mention that the aging of the cookie dough made a huge difference for me - it's now tough for me to enjoy cookies without that rest period (I typically do 3-5 days.) I'm very curious to see if you notice the difference.

    I will typically also make them in large batches, and freeze the portioned dough, so I can have on-demand, warm chocolate chip cookies.

    This is really interesting. I grew up with a step-mom who was -- and still is -- somewhat known for her chocolate chip cookies. It's a recipe she still keeps secret. Anyway, she'd often freeze the dough balls for us to bake when she wasn't around. Being the rotten little bitches that we were, we always viewed those frozen balls as a consolation prize, preferring cookies baked from freshly made dough. But we were dumb-ass kids who didn't know anything about anything.

    I'm looking forward to baking the JT's up on Monday. I won't have a baked-right-away control sample but if I like them as much as I remember liking them, maybe I'll make another batch of the JT dough and cook it in phases, with a day between each, just to see if I can discern the difference. If the "secret" really is aging, I suppose I could do that with any dough (I like).

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #77 - August 11th, 2020, 1:59 pm
    Post #77 - August 11th, 2020, 1:59 pm Post #77 - August 11th, 2020, 1:59 pm
    Baked up the 72-hour-aged Jacques Torres dough on Monday and I have to say that in spite of their impressive appearance, these cookies did not wow me . . .

    Image
    Chocolate Chip Cookies, Jacques Torres Recipe

    These cookies are enormous, with diameters of ~114mm. For additional reference, the plate they're on is 254mm, with a center section of 165mm. I don't think their size helped matters at all. Even though the centers are pleasantly dense and chewy, the edges are pretty hard and crunchy. With cookies this big, it's not a total surprise that they baked unevenly.

    I have no idea how aging the dough for 72 hours affected the outcome but I do plan on trying that again the future, with a dough that I know I like more than this one. Of the four different CCC recipes I've baked in recent weeks, these were my third favorite, so no reason to jump back on this particular train with a non-express ticket.

    Some other things I might do differently if I made this recipe again:

    1) Skip the bread & cake flour blend and go with 100% A/P flour. Both paths land you at virtually identical protein levels. I've read some comments about how the blend makes a difference, a claim I find dubious.

    2) Cut the chocolate back. Yes, I love chocolate but if I want to eat chocolate, I'll eat chocolate. The distinguishing mark -- and the best part -- of a CCC is the balance between chocolate and dough, between the sweet and bitter. I used 54.5% Callebaut chips for this batch and perhaps this recipe exposed that chocolate's flaws. But in the end, as photogenic as the cookies are, there was simply too much chocolate in them.

    3) Bake smaller cookies. As I mentioned above, the large size here may have been a hindrance. Using a 4T scoop produced cookies that not only had too severe a textural variation from edge to center but that are also just too big for a serving. Slightly smaller cookies would likely help the bake and would also make more sense portion-wise.

    One other thing that I cannot remember anyone addressing in all the things I read about these cookies is that 72-hour-chilled dough is extremely hard and therefore, difficult to scoop. I fought through it but took quite a bit of time and it taxed my elbow (cookies should not hurt!). I suppose one could let the dough warm up before scooping it. Maybe an even better idea is to scoop the dough when it's made and chill it in its ready-to-bake shape.

    Speaking of shape, with the dough as mounded as it was, getting the flaked sea salt to adhere to it, especially given its aged-induced dryness, was difficult. As a direct result, there's only tiny circle of salt in the center of each cookie. I probably could have been a bit more aggressive pressing salt into the unbaked dough. But no difference in the amount of salt atop these cookies would have moved the needle very much.

    These were good, not great. Great cookies compel you to pick up another one the moment you finish the previous one. You have to fight the urge not to. These did not do that. These are coffee table cookies. Impressive to the eye but not memorable or distinctive in any way that separated them from the pack. User error on my part? Perhaps.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #78 - August 12th, 2020, 6:18 am
    Post #78 - August 12th, 2020, 6:18 am Post #78 - August 12th, 2020, 6:18 am
    Well, that's surely a disappointing step in the cookie saga.

    I typically age for flavor, and notice caramel-like complexity, with a small change in texture/dryness. As I get older, I'm also finding that I prefer the less salad-plate-sized cookies, which still rewards with a more firm edge and gooey center. I use AP flour, and scoop the cookies at room temp, leaving the dough out for a few hours before refrigerating the scooped dough.

    I'm following your adventure with enjoyment, and I'm looking forward to what your next step is!
    Katherine

    Everyone has a price: mine is chocolate.
  • Post #79 - August 12th, 2020, 9:47 am
    Post #79 - August 12th, 2020, 9:47 am Post #79 - August 12th, 2020, 9:47 am
    Katherine_84f wrote:Well, that's surely a disappointing step in the cookie saga.

    I typically age for flavor, and notice caramel-like complexity, with a small change in texture/dryness. As I get older, I'm also finding that I prefer the less salad-plate-sized cookies, which still rewards with a more firm edge and gooey center. I use AP flour, and scoop the cookies at room temp, leaving the dough out for a few hours before refrigerating the scooped dough.

    I'm following your adventure with enjoyment, and I'm looking forward to what your next step is!

    A mere bump in the road! :D I'm certainly not tossing these cookies (sorry, had to) but I am looking forward to aging some dough made from an already vetted recipe -- and one for which I'll have a solid basis of comparison. I appreciate the additional guidance on process, etc.

    Interestingly, I think the JT cookies improved in the 24 hours after they were baked. Perhaps it's due to the humidity but the edges softened up just a bit, taking them from hard and crumbly to firm and crisp. And the centers are still great. I'm not thrilled with the flavor, though. That could be attributable to a number of factors but most likely the chocolate. It dominates and because of that, it's flaws/off notes are highlighted. But also, that browned butter move in the ATK recipe had a profoundly favorable effect and it almost feels like it's missing here. Depth of flavor, especially later in the chew, seems to be lacking. I just have so little experience, it's really hard to nail down which inputs are affecting which outputs. I'm certainly better at it than I was a few weeks ago but I'm still a total n00b.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #80 - August 13th, 2020, 7:41 pm
    Post #80 - August 13th, 2020, 7:41 pm Post #80 - August 13th, 2020, 7:41 pm
    Changing gears just a bit, these are the Oatmeal Scotchies (with homemade toffee) from Mindy Segal's Cookie Love . . .

    First, the toffee. The OS recipe calls for this or butterscotch morsels. They are a guilty pleasure but it's hard to feel good about baking with them. I'd never made toffee before but it turned out really well. I might cut the salt back just a bit if I do it again.

    Image
    Toffee
    Once it cooled, I put it into baggie and broke it up gently into morsel-sized pieces with a flat-sided meat pounder.

    Image
    Oatmeal Scotchies
    Thin, crispy, buttery and delicious. I've only ever had these before when baked by Mindy herself and those were way better but these were damned good, too.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #81 - August 19th, 2020, 6:32 pm
    Post #81 - August 19th, 2020, 6:32 pm Post #81 - August 19th, 2020, 6:32 pm
    These are the "famous" Neiman-Marcus chocolate chip cookies, the recipe for which someone supposedly once paid $300. It's all over the internet these days, though there are slight variations from site to site. I had a friend send it to me but parts of what he sent didn't look quite right, so I referenced a few websites -- plus some of my newly acquired knowledge -- to come up with a recipe that I thought would be worth the effort. As it turns out, it was . . .

    Image
    Neiman-Marcus-recipe Chocolate Chip Cookies

    The two biggest calling cards of these cookies are grated milk chocolate and oats in the dough. Which milk chocolate, how much of it and what exact form the oats are supposed to take are all subject to interpretation.

    Many recipes I found online default to Hershey. Some called for four ounces. Some called for eight. Since it needed to be grated by hand, I opted for four ounces. And using what I had on-hand meant grating up a bar and half of Valrhona Bahibe 46% (certainly overkill but easier than going to the store). Grating thin bars of room-temperature milk chocolate with microplane was a fairly tough task. Next time, I'll try to freeze it first. As for the rest of the chocolate, the recipes to which I had access called for between 283g and 340g. I went with 340g of Guittard 46% chips. After the Jacques Torres experience about which I posted earlier, my confidence in the Callebaut 54.5% chips has slipped.

    As for the oats, 275g seemed to be the consensus amount. Some recipes called for a portion of the oats to be ground up in a blender. Others called for all the oats to be ground up. Some said coarsely. Others said finely. I guessed that some oaty texture would be pleasant, so I ground 220g of rolled oats into a fine powder and added the remaining 55g of rolled oats directly to the dough.

    Some recipes called for the addition of (golden) raisins. That sounded pretty awful, so I left them out. Just because there are 64 crayons in the box, doesn't mean you have to use them all. I did include the nuts, though. In my batch, I used 1.5 cups of roasted pecan halves (~5 minutes @ 300F). I didn't bother chopping them up because I figured the stand mixer would break them up adequately into large, manageable pieces . . . and it did. And I again browned 75% of the butter, per ATK. This has become a requisite move. It adds so much terrific flavor, I think that unless there's a real good reason not to, I'll always do this when baking most cookies.

    In spite of what some the recipes recommended, I didn't roll the dough into a log, wrap it with plastic wrap, refrigerate it overnight or cut it into discs before baking. Instead, I used a 2T scoop directly from the mixer bowl, placed 8 mounds of dough per parchment-lined half-sheet pan and tamped them down slightly before they went into the oven. That produced 42 cookies, and seemed to turn out just fine.

    The bottom line is that the N-M cookies are outstanding. They're chocolately but not overly so. They're sweet but not too sweet. The texture is crispy (from the oats?), light and yet still, somehow, pleasantly chewy. I'd really like to make them again. The only road block is grating that pesky milk chocolate and I'm sure that starting with a big block instead of small bars will make that task much easier.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #82 - August 19th, 2020, 7:29 pm
    Post #82 - August 19th, 2020, 7:29 pm Post #82 - August 19th, 2020, 7:29 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:These are the "famous" Neiman-Marcus chocolate chip cookies, the recipe for which someone supposedly once paid $300. It's all over the internet these days, though there are slight variations from site to site. I had a friend send it to me but parts of what he sent didn't look quite right, so I referenced a few websites -- plus some of my newly acquired knowledge -- to come up with a recipe that I thought would be worth the effort. As it turns out, it was . . .

    Image
    Neiman-Marcus-recipe Chocolate Chip Cookies

    The two biggest calling cards of these cookies are grated milk chocolate and oats in the dough. Which milk chocolate, how much of it and what exact form the oats are supposed to take are all subject to interpretation.

    Many recipes I found online default to Hershey. Some called for four ounces. Some called for eight. Since it needed to be grated by hand, I opted for four ounces. And using what I had on-hand meant grating up a bar and half of Valrhona Bahibe 46% (certainly overkill but easier than going to the store). Grating thin bars of room-temperature milk chocolate with microplane was a fairly tough task. Next time, I'll try to freeze it first. As for the rest of the chocolate, the recipes to which I had access called for between 283g and 340g. I went with 340g of Guittard 46% chips. After the Jacques Torres experience about which I posted earlier, my confidence in the Callebaut 54.5% chips has slipped.

    As for the oats, 275g seemed to be the consensus amount. Some recipes called for a portion of the oats to be ground up in a blender. Others called for all the oats to be ground up. Some said coarsely. Others said finely. I guessed that some oaty texture would be pleasant, so I ground 220g of rolled oats into a fine powder and added the remaining 55g of rolled oats directly to the dough.

    Some recipes called for the addition of (golden) raisins. That sounded pretty awful, so I left them out. Just because there are 64 crayons in the box, doesn't mean you have to use them all. I did include the nuts, though. In my batch, I used 1.5 cups of roasted pecan halves (~5 minutes @ 300F). I didn't bother chopping them up because I figured the stand mixer would break them up adequately into large, manageable pieces . . . and it did. And I again browned 75% of the butter, per ATK. This has become a requisite move. It adds so much terrific flavor, I think that unless there's a real good reason not to, I'll always do this when baking most cookies.

    In spite of what some the recipes recommended, I didn't roll the dough into a log, wrap it with plastic wrap, refrigerate it overnight or cut it into discs before baking. Instead, I used a 2T scoop directly from the mixer bowl, placed 8 mounds of dough per parchment-lined half-sheet pan and tamped them down slightly before they went into the oven. That produced 42 cookies, and seemed to turn out just fine.

    The bottom line is that the N-M cookies are outstanding. They're chocolately but not overly so. They're sweet but not too sweet. The texture is crispy (from the oats?), light and yet still, somehow, pleasantly chewy. I'd really like to make them again. The only road block is grating that pesky milk chocolate and I'm sure that starting with a big block instead of small bars will make that task much easier.=R=
    Thank you for the update Mr. Suburban. Those look good.

    So, since you synthesized, combined, and added tricks, will you post your recipe and instructions for the Mr. Suburban Chocolate Chip Cookies?
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #83 - August 19th, 2020, 7:35 pm
    Post #83 - August 19th, 2020, 7:35 pm Post #83 - August 19th, 2020, 7:35 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote: Just because there are 64 crayons in the box, doesn't mean you have to use them all.

    If I ever take up crocheting.
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #84 - August 19th, 2020, 8:55 pm
    Post #84 - August 19th, 2020, 8:55 pm Post #84 - August 19th, 2020, 8:55 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote: Just because there are 64 crayons in the box, doesn't mean you have to use them all.

    If I ever take up crocheting.
    Nothing wrong with crocheting. It is more than granny squares.
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #85 - August 22nd, 2020, 6:24 pm
    Post #85 - August 22nd, 2020, 6:24 pm Post #85 - August 22nd, 2020, 6:24 pm
    Mr. Suburban, here are some more cookies to try! Monster Cookies by Tavel Bristol-Joseph. Think I'm going to have to give them a try meself.

    edited to add:
    Some of the reviews of this cookie go on about how much butter it uses. A pound of butter! A whole pound of butter! Imagine. They must be good with a pound of butter!

    But .... The Toll House Cookie recipe uses a half pound of butter and 2.25 cups of flour. Double that and you have a pound of butter! and 4.5 cups of flour. This Monster Cookie recipe has 7 cups of flour when you combine the AP and Sonora flour. So, really, the amount of butter per cookie isn't any more that a Toll House Cookie, if you made giant Toll House Cookies. What, double the batch and make only 16 cookies from it.

    The people going on about a pound of butter must not be thinking too clearly, or at all. :roll:
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #86 - August 23rd, 2020, 11:20 am
    Post #86 - August 23rd, 2020, 11:20 am Post #86 - August 23rd, 2020, 11:20 am
    Xexo wrote:Mr. Suburban, here are some more cookies to try! Monster Cookies by Tavel Bristol-Joseph. Think I'm going to have to give them a try meself.

    edited to add:
    Some of the reviews of this cookie go on about how much butter it uses. A pound of butter! A whole pound of butter! Imagine. They must be good with a pound of butter!

    But .... The Toll House Cookie recipe uses a half pound of butter and 2.25 cups of flour. Double that and you have a pound of butter! and 4.5 cups of flour. This Monster Cookie recipe has 7 cups of flour when you combine the AP and Sonora flour. So, really, the amount of butter per cookie isn't any more that a Toll House Cookie, if you made giant Toll House Cookies. What, double the batch and make only 16 cookies from it.

    The people going on about a pound of butter must not be thinking too clearly, or at all. :roll:

    Haha, an interesting take but I have to confess those don't look very good to me. As I posted above, I'm not a fan of huge cookies (or 'monster' anything, for that matter). Lemon (zest) and chocolate is a combination I know I wouldn't like and whole wheat flour seems like a perfectly unnecessary inclusion. Once you get past those ingredients and cut the recipe in half, there's nothing particularly distinctive about it. Honestly, the picture of the cookie doesn't look particularly appetizing, either . . . more like a scone or a small cake.

    It's going to be hot here this week but if I do bake, I have a couple new recipes in the queue . . . plus my son, who's not a fan of chocolate*, is now requesting the Oatmeal Rum-Raisins on a regular basis, so those may end up at the top of the list.

    =R=

    *I'm not particularly proud of this but he does look like me, so I'm pretty sure he's mine. :D
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #87 - August 23rd, 2020, 11:39 am
    Post #87 - August 23rd, 2020, 11:39 am Post #87 - August 23rd, 2020, 11:39 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Haha, an interesting take but I have to confess those don't look very good to me. As I posted above, I'm not a fan of huge cookies (or 'monster' anything, for that matter). Lemon (zest) and chocolate is a combination I know I wouldn't like and whole wheat flour seems like a perfectly unnecessary inclusion. Once you get past those ingredients and cut the recipe in half, there's nothing particularly distinctive about it. Honestly, the picture of the cookie doesn't look particularly appetizing, either . . . more like a scone or a small cake.

    It's going to be hot here this week but if I do bake, I have a couple new recipes in the queue . . . plus my son, who's not a fan of chocolate*, is now requesting the Oatmeal Rum-Raisins on a regular basis, so those may end up at the top of the list.

    =R=

    *I'm not particularly proud of this but he does look like me, so I'm pretty sure he's mine. :D
    I wasn't sure if you'd like the idea or not. But you have been baking cookies that seemed to stray from your original intent, so I thought I'd point them out to you. No problem they don't interest you.

    Oh, and your son, well, if everyone liked the same thing, there'd be shortages everywhere, long lines, and lots of lonely people. Variety, the spice of life. Personally I don't like most anything seafood or fishy and not a fan of pickled things, I shudder to admit on this forum, and that is okay. The rest of you can eat all that without any competition from me! :wink:
    The thing about quotes on the internet is you can not confirm their validity. -- Abraham Lincoln
  • Post #88 - August 24th, 2020, 3:27 pm
    Post #88 - August 24th, 2020, 3:27 pm Post #88 - August 24th, 2020, 3:27 pm
    Modified my Oatmeal Rum-Raisin cookie recipe to incorporate some exceptional Barhi and Halawy variety dates that were given to me by a friend. We ate and shared most of the dates out of hand but saved the last 150g for this batch of cookies . . .

    Image
    Oatmeal Rum-Date Cookies with Toasted Pecans

    I tried to approximate the raisins by pitting and freezing the dates before I chopped them into bits. But the dates contain so much natural sugar, they never really froze solid and even chopped, they became more of a coarse paste than individual bits. Once in the dough, they distributed well enough, though.

    More than anything else, they affected the texture of the cookies, which are crispy on the outside and very chewy on the inside. It's a moist chewiness, not a cakey one, which is very pleasant. I can't say I was going for that because I was experimenting and had no idea what to expect but I'll take it.

    Flavor-wise, the dates are milder and more subtle than raisins, and that's exactly how they manifest in the cookies. They impart virtually no tartness but instead deliver honey-like notes, especially in the finish, that match up really well with the roasted pecans. Not sure if I'll ever bake these again but I'd say it was a successful experiment.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #89 - August 24th, 2020, 6:15 pm
    Post #89 - August 24th, 2020, 6:15 pm Post #89 - August 24th, 2020, 6:15 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Flavor-wise, the dates are milder and more subtle than raisins, and that's exactly how they manifest in the cookies. They impart virtually no tartness but instead deliver honey-like notes, especially in the finish, that match up really well with the roasted pecans. Not sure if I'll ever bake these again but I'd say it was a successful experiment.

    =R=

    Are you a part time sommelier? :D
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #90 - August 24th, 2020, 7:17 pm
    Post #90 - August 24th, 2020, 7:17 pm Post #90 - August 24th, 2020, 7:17 pm
    Dave148 wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Flavor-wise, the dates are milder and more subtle than raisins, and that's exactly how they manifest in the cookies. They impart virtually no tartness but instead deliver honey-like notes, especially in the finish, that match up really well with the roasted pecans. Not sure if I'll ever bake these again but I'd say it was a successful experiment.

    =R=

    Are you a part time sommelier? :D

    Oh, geezus . . . I'm in too deep! :lol:

    Image
    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain

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