I've made these cookies with just about every kind of chocolate known to humankind with universally satisfying results, but my all-time favorite way is to chop up premium chocolate, not worrying about cutting it into uniform sizes or shapes. Having chunks, chips, and slivers makes the eating more fun, and I love the way the mishmash of shapes looks when the cookies are baked—streaked, marbled, tweedy, and totally tempting.
From Baking: From My Home to Yours (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 2006). —Dorie Greenspan
- Makes about 45 cookies
salt (1 1/4 teaspoons if you really like salt)
sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
(packed) light brown sugar
pure vanilla extract
bittersweet chocolate, chopped into chips, or 2 cups store-bought chocolate chips or chunks
finely chopped walnuts or pecans
- Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 375° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.
- Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter on medium speed for about 1 minute, until smooth. Add the sugars and beat for another 2 minutes or so, until well blended. Beat in the vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each egg goes in. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients in 3 portions, mixing only until each addition is incorporated. On low speed, or by hand with a rubber spatula, mix in the chocolate and nuts. (The dough can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen. If you'd like, you can freeze rounded tablespoonfuls of dough, ready for baking. Freeze the mounds on a lined baking sheet, then bag them when they're solid. There's no need to defrost before baking—just add a minute or two to the baking time.)
- Spoon the dough by slightly rounded tablespoonfuls onto the baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between spoonfuls.
- Bake the cookies—one sheet at a time and rotating the sheet at the midway point—for 10 to 12 minutes, or until they are brown at the edges and golden in the center; they may still be a little soft in the middle, and that's just fine.
- Pull the sheet from the oven and allow the cookies to rest for 1 minute, then carefully, using a wide metal spatula, transfer them to the racks to cool to room temperature.
- Repeat with the remainder of the dough, cooling the baking sheets between batches.