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I have been watching, reading and following Ina Garten since she started her show, The Barefoot Contessa, on Food Network. Her fabulous cookbooks, simple recipes and down-to-earth personality have drawn me in for the last decade. Did you hear that she is coming out with a new cookbook? I can’t wait!
There are a few of her recipes that I make regularly, depending on the season. Last week, I revisited a favorite called Chocolate White Chocolate Chunk Cookies. Ina’s recipe calls for white chocolate and it’s fantastic. But, I have changed it in the past by making it with a combination of white, butterscotch and/or chocolate chips and every way has been great.
Because I wanted to make a dessert that was extremely chocolately this time, I thought only using chocolate chips was worth a try. How bad could it be? Well, it did not disappoint. Yes, it was full of great chocolate flavor and, yes, it was sweet, and not surprisingly, it had the same great depth and consistency that I remember.
The cookies lasted for about five days in my house and, although they are always best just out of the oven, each day they still remained moist and flavorful. So, if you have a sweet tooth or your family is begging you for something to sooth their chocolate cravings, this is the recipe to try.
*Important note: I always make the cookie dough for all of my recipes a day in advance. Just make the batter, put it in the fridge overnight and bake the next day. It helps firm up the butter so your cookies rise better.
Here is how I made the recipe:
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 c light brown sugar, packed
1 c granulated sugar
2 t pure vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs at room temperature (I use large eggs and they come out fine)
2/3 c good unsweetened cocoa
2 c all-purpose flour
1 t baking soda
1 t kosher salt
1 1/2 pounds good white chocolate, butterscotch or semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped or chips (this is a lot so if seems too much for you, reduce it slightly. I did when I made the recipe with all chocolate).
Cream the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the vanilla, then the eggs, one at a time, and mix well. Add the cocoa and mix again. Sift (or whisk) together the flour, baking soda, and salt and add to the chocolate with the mixer on low speed until just combined. Fold in the chips or chopped chocolate. Refrigerate.
The next day, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Drop the dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, using a 1 3/4-inch ice cream scoop or a rounded tablespoon. Dampen your hands and flatten the dough slightly. Bake for exactly 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let them cool slightly on the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
I found that flattening the dough didn’t really make a difference. But, try it and see what you like best.