Mine and Rose’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

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This week, the Alpha Bakers baking assignment was My Chocolate Chip Cookies from:

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HOW IT WORKS:

Each week we as Alpha Bakers, are assigned one of the recipes from Rose’s new baking book and we as a group all over the world bake the same recipe at the same time.  Our objective is to share our successes, where we got stumped, what questions did we have along the way, our joys and in some cases our baking shortcomings.

FAIR WARNING:

PER MY WEB HOST, in order to leave a comment on my site, you will need to click on the title of the blog each week.  It opens into a new blog window in which comments are able to be left at the bottom of the blog. Thank you all for your comments!

FULL DISCLOSURE: This week I did slightly cheat and added a teaspoon of walnut oil to the batter but other than that I stayed true to the recipe.  

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Ok, we all know that cookies can’t talk to us, but my cookies were simply screaming at me when I set them on the cooling rack. I heard them saying to me,

” Now you know you should have soaked some dried cherries or cranberries in your favorite Raspberry Liquor and added them to me…..”

So I have made a note to add this addition to my next batch.

I must say that I really loved this recipe.  I learned a lot and crafted some new techniques ( not necessarily in the recipe steps, but techniques that I applied ).

First, Rose has a wonderful technique for getting the skins off of walnuts.  The concept is a culinary masterpiece in my opinion as the skins, if left on, impart a bitter quality which will effect the taste and outcome of the baked product.

Here’s my technique:

Save your old Pasta Sauce Jars

Save your old Pasta Sauce Jars

Place your HOT out of the oven walnuts in the jar and put on the lid

Place your HOT out of the oven walnuts in the jar and put on the lid

Shake vigorously, yes even over your head, for exactly 1 minute.  Then tilt the opened jar and allow the walnuts to fall out onto a clean, terry cloth tea towel.  Be extra careful not to shake the jar as all of the skins have fallen to the bottom of the glass jar.

discarded bitter walnut skins

discarded bitter walnut skins

Then gently rub the walnuts between your palms and set the cleaned walnuts in a different area of the tea towel. Continue until all walnuts have been rubbed and final skins separated.

Then gently rub the walnuts between your palms and set the cleaned walnuts in a different area of the tea towel. Continue until all walnuts have been rubbed and final skins separated.

The proof in the technique is here....if you look closely, only a few skins actually remained on the walnuts after shaking in the jar

The proof in the technique is here….if you look closely, only a few skins actually remained on the walnuts after shaking in the jar

And VOILA, you have roasted, De-skinned walnuts in about 2 minutes from the time you opened your oven

And VOILA, you have roasted, De-skinned walnuts in about 2 minutes from the time you opened your oven

My second technique was making the clarified beurre noir.

First we take room temperature butter. Rose list the temperature range in the recipe

First we take room temperature butter. Rose list the temperature range in the recipe

Next we apply extremely low heat. Our goal here is only to melt the butter

Next we apply extremely low heat. Our goal here is only to melt the butter

Milk solids are separating nicely

Milk solids are separating nicely

Per the recipe instructions, we skim off the foam

Per the recipe instructions, we skim off the foam

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Here's my additional technique. I find that to clarify butter, it is so much easier at the lower temperature to remove the foam by creating a point on a few paper towels. By applying the paper towel tip directly onto the foam, the foam dances to it and the removal of the foam is much easier

Here’s my additional technique. I find that to clarify butter, it is so much easier at the lower temperature to remove the foam by creating a point on a few paper towels. By applying the paper towel tip directly onto the foam, the foam dances to it and the removal of the foam is much easier

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Well, it works for me

Next we want to increase the heat just to low and now you really need to watch the butter. Please also be very careful as the increased heat will cause the HOT LIQUID, butter to pop out of the sauce pan

Next we want to increase the heat just to low and now you really need to watch the butter. Please also be very careful as the increased heat will cause the HOT LIQUID, butter to pop out of the sauce pan

The increased heat is causing the foam to separate into pools which is to our benefit as it makes it much easier now to remove the remaining foam

The increased heat is causing the foam to separate into pools which is to our benefit as it makes it much easier now to remove the remaining foam

Again, we use the paper towel technique in order to collect the foam and remove eventually 90 % of it while still in the sauce pan

Again, we use the paper towel technique in order to collect the foam and remove eventually 90 % of it while still in the sauce pan

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Per the recipe instructions, we had already set up a measure covered with a strainer which has cheese cloth lined to collect the remaining milk solids.

Per the recipe instructions, we had already set up a measure covered with a strainer which has cheese cloth lined to collect the remaining milk solids.

What is so important here is to rely totally on your sense of smell.  The MOMENT you begin to smell a nutty flavor, you have clarified beurre noir.

Press the liquid through the cheese cloth and the strainer with a silicone spatula

Press the liquid through the cheese cloth and the strainer with a silicone spatula

As you can see, only a very small amount of foam was transferred from the sauce pan

As you can see, only a very small amount of foam was transferred from the sauce pan

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The final use of my paper towel technique will help to remove the remaining foam

The final use of my paper towel technique will help to remove the remaining foam

And here fellow Alpha Bakers, I give you Clarified Beurre Noir, or as I like to call it "CBN"

And here fellow Alpha Bakers, I give you Clarified Beurre Noir, or as I like to call it “CBN”

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I was delighted to find Muscovado sugar at The Fresh Market; no one else has it in my area; The recipe calls for light Muscovado sugar but I was so excited to find this I took a chance and used it. My cookies do appear a bit darker in color than the pictures from other Alpha Bakers, but my excitement got the best of me

I was delighted to find Muscovado sugar at The Fresh Market; no one else has it in my area; The recipe calls for light Muscovado sugar but I was so excited to find this I took a chance and used it. My cookies do appear a bit darker in color than the pictures from other Alpha Bakers, but my excitement got the best of me

Mise en Place

Mise en Place

I found a sale on McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract so I just had to show off my two bottles here

Other Mise en Place

Other Mise en Place

Rose gave us a variation for Melt in your Mouth Chocolate Chips, so that got MY attention; I used the fine chocolate I had in my chocolate pantry - YES, I have a chocolate pantry

Rose gave us a variation for Melt in your Mouth Chocolate Chips, so that got MY attention; I used the fine chocolate I had in my chocolate pantry – YES, I have a chocolate pantry

Kristina Taylor,  gave us a technique she uses to grate the fine chocolate and I quote her, “Pro tip: if you use a micro plane grater, you get double chocolate cookies. “
Worked like a charm! Thanks Krista!

Worked like a charm! Thanks Krista!

You can visit Krista at her blog, http://eatsndrinks.ca/

Here's where I got creative and added Walnut Oil - if you look at the measuring spoon, this was Rose's that I purchased from her and Woody's over flow sale!

Here’s where I got creative and added Walnut Oil – if you look at the measuring spoon, this was Rose’s that I purchased from her and Woody’s over flow sale!

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Dough was mixed

Dough was mixed

Equally divided into two logs

Equally divided into two logs

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rolled and refrigerated with an option to bake in 30 minutes, 12 hours or overnight - my overnight turned into three days but such is the life

rolled and refrigerated with an option to bake in 30 minutes, 12 hours or overnight – my overnight turned into three days but such is the life

I found another technique along the way. I did not find the rolling into a ball step was functional for this dough filled with both walnuts and chocolate chips, so I measure each cookie dough by breaking off of the log to the recipe instructions measurement and forming a vertical log shaping it with my fingers

I found another technique along the way. I did not find the rolling into a ball step was functional for this dough filled with both walnuts and chocolate chips, so I measure each cookie dough by breaking off of the log to the recipe instructions measurement and forming a vertical log shaping it with my fingers

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Vertical dough mass

Vertical dough mass

I then used a measuring cup to flatten out my vertical dough

I then used a measuring cup to flatten out my vertical dough

and VOILA, uniform cookies

and VOILA, uniform cookies

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I found baking the cookies on the second batch 30 seconds less than the highest time Rose listed helped retain moisture

I found baking the cookies on the second batch 30 seconds less than the highest time Rose listed helped retain moisture

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Happy Baking Ya’ll!

2 thoughts on “Mine and Rose’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

  1. Walnut oil, what a great idea! Isn’t the jar vs walnut skins just the best ever?! I’ll remember that about the aroma from the beurre noisette. I never know how dark to go. I only had dark Muscavado sugar in the cupboard so I used it, too. I like the flavor of the dark a lot. Adding dried cherries soaked in raspberry liquor sounds delightful.

    • Thank you so much for your comments Vicki! I LOVE the Muscavado Sugar! Never tried it until now; I remember previous recipes we have baked,not sure which ones but I remember that you had commented how you loved the combination of Muscavado Sugar and Lyle’s Golden Syrup! NOW THAT, I can’t wait to experience! I also will be doubling the recipe next time, all that work for only 20 cookies doesn’t work for me. I need to be able to share with others! LOL I also can’t wait to try the recipe again with the Raspberry Liquor soaked dried fruit. HAPPY BAKING!

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