There once was a chocolate chip cookie.
This was no ordinary chocolate chip cookie. Even Toll House could not take credit for this luxurious cookie. If you think I’m being dramatic, think again. It would make any grandma blush. This is a Browned Buttered Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Lightly Sea Salted Cookie. I know the name is intimidating. To me, the name of the cookie doesn’t do it justice. My real feelings for this cookie might take a while to explain, but let me break it down for you.
Browned butter should be called liquid gold. This technique helps create the perfect texture. Chewy in the center and crispy on the edges. Browned butter continues to spread its magic by enhancing the sprinkle of espresso powder and vanilla. The flavors don’t end there. As you bite into the chewy, gooey center, your taste buds are met with a bitter/sharp melted dark chocolate. Immediately followed by a sweet soothing milk chocolate. Put all of this magic into one bite, your senses will explode with the touch of sea salt hitting the roof of your mouth.
Now, I say this is an affair because a classic such as milk would be the proper partner for this morsel of over-indulgence. But, my love for this cookie cannot be met with something so underwhelming. I followed my hidden desires and hunted for the perfect match. I met an Australian pinot noir. Grown in between two famous regions, this beauty comes from Victoria, Australia. The name of this lover is Brokenwood, Beechworth 2016 Pinot Noir. This wine has light aromatics, such as subtle floral notes. This wine comes off shy, but mingles well with the aroma of freshly baked cookies. With a first bite and sip of this bright, tart pinot noir, this will not only accentuate, but will complement the dark chocolate. A second sip will cleanse the palate. It will only leave you wanting more.
After making your imagination go wild, of course I would include the recipe. The pinot noir, on the other hand, may be a little hard to grasp. Any Australian or New Zealand pinot noir would complement your cookie. Though they can be completely different styles, look for fruit forward or anything with spiced notes.
Special tip for these: best when fresh! I pre roll the dough into the size I want, place them in a sealed ziplock bag and store in the freezer. Pull out as many as you like when ready to bake. It’s a great way to keep the affair going long after Valentine’s Day is over.
Makes 18 cookies
- 1 cup bread flour
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt or 1½ teaspoon table salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2-3 tablespoons cold water
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- ½ cup white sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon espresso powder
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- ½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 5 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350˚F (180˚C).
- In a medium bowl, sift together the flours, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
- In a medium light-bottomed saucepan, add the butter and melt over medium heat.
- Bring the butter to a boil, stirring occasionally. As the water begins to boil out of the butter, the milk solids in the butter will separate, sink to the bottom, and begin to toast and brown. As this begins to happen, make sure to stir constantly so the butter browns evenly. It may become quite foamy and difficult to see, so keep a close eye on it.
- Once the butter has turned a nice nutty brown, remove from the heat and pour into a liquid measuring cup to stop the cooking. Give it a stir and add 2-3 tablespoons of cold water to the butter to bring it back up to 1 cup of liquid. Set aside to cool to room temperature. To help speed this process up, you can place in the fridge for 10-15 minutes. You want to make sure the butter is still liquid when you’re adding it to the dough later on, so make sure to remove after 15 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add the sugars, vanilla, espresso powder, and cooled brown butter. Cream together with an electric hand mixer until light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes.
- Add the egg and yolk and beat until incorporated.
- Add the dry ingredients, about ⅓ of the mixture at a time, and beat between additions until just incorporated. It’s okay for there to be a bit of unmixed flour on the edge of bowl, this will be incorporated in the next step.
- Using a wooden spoon, fold the chocolate chips and chunks into the dough
- Scoop the cookies onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet in 3-tablespoon-sized mounds.
- For optimal flavor, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or, even better, overnight.
- Evenly space the dough 3 inches apart from one another on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake in a preheated oven for 12-14 minutes.
- Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.