This Chef’s Trick Makes Cookies Perfect

Dwayne Ingraham, winner of the Food Network’s “Best Baker in America” ​​award, created a pound cake from scratch when he was 11 years old. But it wasn’t until he went to college that he discovered the restaurant world and that baking could be a career.

“I was like whoa, are you telling me someone’s gonna pay for me to play with sugar and flour?” he said. “They didn’t mention that at the job fair.”

Ingraham, who ran the pastry program at John Currence’s City Grocery in Oxford, Mississippi, is now the pastry chef at Odette, a restaurant and boutique in downtown Florence, Alabama.

Its menu of sweets elevates the classics in a playful way, including chocolate chip cookies available at the service counter as take-out treats. An adaptation of this recipe is below.

The secret to the best chocolate chip cookies, Ingraham said, is dark brown sugar. The caramelization of the molasses which causes it to turn brown adds depth.

Ingraham’s cookies contain a mixture of three chocolates, which come together to provide complexity. There are 65% cacao sweet and sour couverture nuggets, which have dark berry notes. He also adds 40% milk chocolate chips and a piece of semi-sweet chocolate.

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“So you bite into a cookie, you can get dark chocolate berry notes, then you can get the milk and the sweet and the creamy, and then the semi-sweet adds traditional flavor,” he said. . “The flavor profile just changes.”

David Ingraham's Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies.
David Ingraham’s Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies.
David Romaine, breadcrumbs, crust, butter and lard

Note that the measurements in this recipe are largely in dry weight rather than liquid cups, with Ingraham advising the use of a kitchen scale for the most accurate measurement. If you don’t have a kitchen scale, you can adapt your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe by adjusting the sugar type and mixing the chips as shown below.

8 ounces unsalted butter (melted)

8 ounces dark brown sugar

4 ounces of white sugar

1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt

2 eggs

½ tablespoon vanilla extract

10 ounces all-purpose flour

¾ teaspoon baking soda

8 ounces 40% milk chocolate (chopped)

4 ounces 65% dark chocolate (chopped)

4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips

8 ounces pecans (toasted and chopped)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Melt the butter, mix with the sugars and salt and place in a large bowl. Whisk the liquids. Sieve and gently incorporate the dry ingredients. Stir in chocolates and nuts until combined. Chill in the refrigerator for five minutes.

Line a cookie sheet or half baking sheet with parchment paper. Spoon with a ¾ ounce cookie scoop or equivalent size scoop. Place 9 cookies on the baking sheet evenly spaced.

In a conventional oven, bake for about 10 minutes, or until cooked through and nicely browned on the bottom. If using a convection oven, cook for 3 minutes, flip the pan, then cook for another 3 minutes. Remove cookies from pan to cool.

This chocolate chip cookie recipe comes courtesy of Ingraham’s upcoming book, “Crumb, Crust, Butter & Lard.”

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