I have spent the last four years working on The Everyday Baker. And, by “working on”, I mean full-on, day-in-day-out production (friends and family can attest to this). Between shaping the concept; juggling outline & spreadsheets (thank you Carolyn aka. best-editor-ever), developing, testing and writing over 200 recipes plus variations; tracking and tweaking techniques; writing headnotes, and oh-so-much front matter; prepping and shooting tens of thousands (thanks to Claire & Sloan) of how-to images; too many editing and proofing passes to count, it’s been a busy few years. Very busy, indeed.
So, as President Jed Bartlett (West Wing nerd here.. no apologies) would say, “What’s next?” [If you’re a West Wing fan like me, you should subscribe to the West Wing Weekly podcast. Will Bailey & an in depth discussion of the series one episode at a time. Need I say more? I didn’t think so. It’s here and it’s really terrific.]
First off, I started participating in weekends again. I had forgotten how wonderful Thursday and Friday night happy hours are and.. how relaxing it is to not have to do zillions of dishes on Saturdays. Cleaning went back on my to-do’s. The cabinets, my office (still in-progress), closets and, with the advent of spring, my garden beds are cleaner, leaner and all around happier. With the aforementioned cabinet clean-out, needlepoint and some future knitting has returned to my life. A few unfinished projects are now finished (my son and daughter are recent beneficiaries) and a new needlepoint belt like the ones my Mom made for my brothers is on the way for my spouse.
Above all, I continue doing what I love to do – I bake. I like to tell people that I make up cookie recipes for a living and that’s really not too far from the mark. Recipes for breads, cakes, mousses, cake truffles, and, yes, cookies are all part of my story but I also develop recipes for soups, stews, easy dinners, salads, appetizers and so forth but for today, I’m sticking with cookies. As for what comes next, stay tuned.
For Your Reference: Here are The Everyday Baker page numbers for the essential techniques you’ll be using in this recipe. Take a look in the book before you start baking.
- For more about preparing cake pans, see p. 232
- For more about ingredients and equipment, see p. 5 thru 28.
- For more about measuring and mixing dry ingredients, see p. 32 and p. 570.
- For more about scraping the bowl and beater, see p. 289.
- For more about scooping cookie dough using a mini scoop, see p. 125.
One Pot Chunky Triple Chocolate Chippers
Makes about 30 cookies.
1 1/3 cups (6 oz.) unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 tsp.baking soda
1/2 tsp. table salt
8 Tbs. (4 oz.) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
2 oz. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup (1 oz.) unsweetened, natural cocoa
1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz.) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz.) firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup (6 oz.) semi-sweet, bittersweet or white chocolate chips
1/2 cup (2 1/4 oz.) coarsely chopped nuts (lightly salted peanuts are my favorite but any nut will work), optional
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F (180°C/gas 4). Line cookie sheets (three, if you have them) with parchment or nonstick liners. Whisk the flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl until well blended.
- Put the butter and 2 oz. chocolate (saves the rest for later) in a large saucepan and set over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until it is melted, about 2 minutes. Slide the pan off the heat, add the cocoa powder, and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Add the granulated sugar and brown sugar,and whisk until blended and no lumps of brown sugar remain. Using your fingertip, check the temperature of the batter—it should be warm but not hot. If it’s hot, set the pan aside for a minute or two before continuing with the recipe.
- Add the egg and vanilla and whisk until well blended. Add the flour mixture and stir with a silicone spatula until blended. Add the chocolate chips and the nuts, if using, and stir until just blended.
- Using a 1-Tbs. mini scoop, scoop into balls and arrange about 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) apart on the prepared cookie sheets. Bake, one sheet at a time, until the tops are puffed and look moist but not wet, 8 to 10 minutes. Move the cookie sheet to a rack and let cool for about 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a rack to cool completely.