Monday, 31 August 2015

20 minute chocolate chip cookies

There's many an occasion when I am asked to produce something sweet for visitors, or last minute trips to family.

Now the only trouble with this is that you need to have an array of ingredients to hand. What I do is keep a small, but select number of staples to hand so that if required, I can conjure up a batch of cookies quickly either to eat immediately or to transport to friends. It is so much quicker and easier than making a cake and you can always have the staples on hand for when required. This recipe makes between 14 and 16 cookies, they are also the soft kind but freeze really well for those of you who like to exercise self-control over their sweet tooth!

My default recipe is:

125 grams of unsalted butter
175 grams of sugar, I tend to use half caster and half soft brown, but you can do all caster or a mix of the caster and soft brown in any proportion you like
1 large egg
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
150 grams of plain flour
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
100 grams of chocolate, roughly chopped. This can be either dark, milk, white, or any combination of these three

To start, preheat the oven to 190 degrees fan or gas mark 5

Next, melt the butter on a saucepan over a low heat. Leave to cool for a couple of minutes.

In the meantime, weigh out the sugar(s) into a large mixing bowl. Then add the melted butter and mix well until everything is combined.

Next add the vanilla extract, followed by the egg. Mix well until thoroughly combined.

Sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder and add to the wet mixture. Mix until the dry ingredients have been fully incorporated, but do not overmix. Finally fold in the chopped chocolate.

To shape the cookies, drop dessertspoons of the mixture on to two large baking sheets lined with either baking parchment, or if you are like me bake-o-glide. Leave space between them as they spread when cooking. If you want to have even sized cookies, you can use an ice-cream scoop, but I prefer the more rustic looking cookie.

Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden. If you are using a higher proportion of brown sugar, you need to check after 8 minutes to avoid burning. Remove the cookies from the oven, allow to cook on the baking sheets for a couple of minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool. The cookies will harden as they cool, but remain soft set.