double-chocolate cookies

so I was chilling in my apartment, popping an ibuprofen while peering at my computer screen. (I know, I know, that’s probably not the best solution for eye strain, but that’s what finals will do to you.) I then got a super random text from one of my friends saying “okay so I texted you and then I realized I texted the wrong person! now I’m stuck hanging out with someone else!”

I was, of course, super confused because this message came out of nowhere. turns out she had tried to text me but had texted someone with the same name as me! I guess that person really wanted to see a movie, because though they’re not close at all, she agreed to go to the movies with my friend, who did not realize she’d invited the wrong person until she was at the theatre. haha! I got some fun texts from her, but I think she managed to enjoy herself despite the mix-up.

my friend made a silly mistake, but it got me thinking about how at one point in my life, if I had made a mistake like that, I probably would have taken it quite seriously. in general, I’ve always taken mistakes and criticisms more personally than I should. it’s an insecurity I’m constantly working on, and the older I get, the more I’ve come to terms with the fact that there will always be external challenges that seem overwhelming and all I can change is my confidence in my own ability to overcome them. in the words of another friend, “apparently our 30s are like the 2L of life. just as hard as our 20s, but we are more equipped to handle what’s thrown at us.”

it’s been a difficult past few weeks, and I really do appreciate the messages I’ve received from friends checking in on me and offering to hang out if I need a break, though they know full well I’ll be deliriously incoherent and probably not too much fun. (in other words, r, though you ended up hanging out with the wrong person, I appreciate the thought!)

anyways, here’s what you came for: a quick cookie recipe from joanne chang, my favorite baker. she once said this was her favorite cookie recipe, and if you love chocolate and gooey centers and chewy, crispy exteriors, this could be your favorite cookie recipe too. as for me, I had all the ingredients and all the insomnia and this is what came out of it.

makes 15 cookies

113g (4oz) unsweetened chocolate, chopped + 56g (2oz) unsweetened chocolate, finely shaved
140g (5oz) bittersweet chocolate (~60% cacao), chopped + 113g (4oz) bittersweet chocolate, chopped into 1/2-in pieces
113g (8 tbsp) unsalted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
300g (1 1/2 cups) granulated sugar
4 eggs
70g (1/2 cup) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp instant coffee powder
75g (3/4 cup) walnuts, toasted, chopped, and cooled

joanne chang. flour: spectacular recipes from boston’s flour bakery + cafe. san francisco: chronicle books, 2010.

1 in a heatproof bowl, combine the 113g unsweetened chocolate, 140g bittersweet chocolate, and butter. place over barely simmering water in a saucepan, stirring occasionally, until completely melted and smooth (make sure the bowl is not touching the water!). remove from heat and whisk in vanilla extract. refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
2 using a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat sugar and eggs on medium speed until light, thick and pale yellow, ~5 minutes. (I did this by hand and it took me ~12 minutes.) on low speed, slowly add chocolate mixture and mix for ~ 15 seconds; the mixture will not be well-mixed at this point.
3 in a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, expresso powder, and remaining 56g unsweetened chocolate, 113g bittersweet chocolate, and walnuts.
4 using a rubber spatula, fold flour mixture into sugar-chocolate mixture until flour is completely incorporated and dough is evenly mixed.
5 scrape dough into airtight container and let rest overnight in fridge (or at least for 3-4 hours) before baking.
6 preheat oven to 350ºF. drop dough in 1/4-cup balls onto parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing them 2-in apart.
7 bake until cookies are cracked on top and soft but not liquid when pressed in the middle, ~15 minutes. let cool on baking sheet for ~15 minutes, then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.
8 cookies can be stored in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, and unbaked dough can be stored in airtight container in fridge for up to 1 week.
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