It was a gloomy afternoon in 2008. It was pouring outside, and a couple of girls were engrossed in watching The Princess Diaries for the 17th time. Purely because there was nothing else on TV.
No one remembers whose idea it was, or how such a situation came to be, but suddenly the girls found themselves flipping through an OTG recipe booklet, and baking a batch chocolate chip cookies. Chocolate was chopped, butter was creamed, and forty minutes later, the smell of Chocolate Chip Cookies wafted through the house.
And that kids, is how the ritual of baking Chocolate Chip Cookies during Mumbai monsoon’s came to be.
Seeing how Mumbai Monsoon arrived super early this year (and we couldn’t have been more grateful for it), I decided to bake my usual Chocolate Chip Cookies, to carry on this ritual of course. But this year, it was different. Instead of baking my cookies the tried and tested way I have been the last 3 years, I decided to try out this very uncommon technique. Just to see if it yielded any better cookies.
Boy, did it ever.
So, here you have it. The lone vehicle of optimism amidst the violent wrath and sweet nothings that is the Mumbai Monsoon, a batch of Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Serves : Roughly 20 cookies. Roughly 10 people. Both varying according to size.
Difficulty : A tad bit tricky. But if you can boil Pasta and don’t cut yourself while chopping vegetables, go ahead please.
Preparation Time : 10- 12 minutes.
Cooking Time : 12 – 15 minutes.
- 2 cups of All Purpose Flour ( Or Maida)
- 150 grams of Butter
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 3/4 cup of brown sugar
- 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 tsp of Baking Soda
- 2 tbsp of Vanilla Essence (I used 1 Vanilla Bean)
The very first step which differentiates this recipe from most other cookie recipes, is browned butter.
(For the uninitiated, Browned Butter is the most god-awfully sinful form of butter there is. So lovely, and so evil.)
On a non stick pan, drop in all the butter. Heat it on medium to low heat, for 3- 4 minutes. Keep swirling till all the butter has melted, and it takes on a brownish tinge. Make sure not to burn the butter.
Pour it out in a big mixing bowl.
When the butter is still a tad bit warm, throw in both the sugars – the brown and the white.
Once the sugar has landed, start mixing the butter and sugar mixture with all the fury you can manage. After mixing for a good 2 – 3 minutes, you’ll notice how the mixture has taken up a lumpy marmalade like texture as well as this lovely caramel colour.
(At this point, set your oven to preheat at 170 degree Celsius for 10 – 12 minutes.)
‘Tis now that you drop in the egg, along with the egg yolk.
Drop in two teaspoons of Vanilla Essence here.
But since my recent visit to the South of the Country, I’ve gotten my hands on some lovely Vanilla Beans. So I used this opportunity to try them.
This lovely bean paste( or vanilla essence) is dropped along with the egg, and we furiously mix once more.
That is, up until we get this runny golden substance.
Now, dump in the flour and the baking soda.
And dough the mixture together. This is a very physically demanding job when done with a weapon such as the spoon here. I’d suggest tricking a younger brother into completing this task.
Soon, you’ll get this very sticky dough.
And finally, drop in the chocolate chips. Glorious dark chocolate chips, and mix one last time.
Now, grease a parchment or butter paper, and line the baking tray with it.
I use the butter paper in which the butter comes in, to butter the butter paper with which I would line the tray; as the butter paper in which the butter comes in, inevitably has quite a lot of butter remains sticking on it.
Did you get that? I sure hope you did.
Now, spoon out small dollops of the cookie dough onto the tray.
Mmm. Cookie Dough.
Bake this at 190 degree Celsius for 13 – 15 minutes. The exact time depends on your oven, so keep an eye on it post the 10th minute.
And 15 minutes later, tah- dah!
These cookies are as chewy as they come. Chewy from the inside, and crispy on the outside. It’s the most perfect harmony.
I can’t even imagine how perfect these would be for the midnight snack, or the reassuring companion to a glass of milk.
Or a hot mug of coffee.
Or a few crumbled on a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream.
OR for fellow chocoholics like me, with some hot chocolate.
Yup, I am definitely baking these again. Soon.
They’re warm and wonderful, you know.