Monday, November 14, 2005

Milk Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

Down deep in the darkest recesses of your heart, you know you like milk chocolate. Creamier, sweeter, milder than dark chocolate, it probably reminds you of your childhood.
It's okay to like it.
Despite what the marketing machine and food snobs will tell you, milk chocolate is not necessarily inferior to dark chocolate. Some is good, some is not. This is true of just about every food product there is. Milk chocolate has a lower percentage of cacoa solids compared to dark chocolate and also has milk and sugar added to it. Dark chocolate also has sugar, but often considerably less.
While I do like dark chocolate, I thought it would be nice, for a change, to pay tribute to the classic milk chocolate. These cookies fit the bill exactly, with milk chocolate melted into the batter and milk chocolate chips stirred in. If I had used dark chocolate in these, I would have increased both the butter and sugar. As it is, these cookies are perfectly chocolatey without the rather aggressive notes that darker cookies can have. If you must have nuts, you may add 1/2 cup, but I think that these are perfect as is. The edges are crisp, the center is soft and you will be reaching for a second before you have finished the first.

Milk Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 ½ cups ap flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
¾ cup butter (1 ½ sticks), room temperature
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups milk chocolate chips, divided

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, melt (in the microwave or over a double boiler) 3/4 cup milk chocolate. Set aside to cool slightly.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, cream together butter and sugars. Add in eggs one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. Add in the vanilla and the melted chocolate.
Stirring by hand, gradually add in the flour mixture, followed by the milk chocolate chips. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet.
Bake at 350F for 9-11 minutes, until set.
Allow to cool on pans for about 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Makes 3 1/2 - 4 dozen.