It’s been way too long since I’ve posted a recipe and I wanted to (kind of) stray from all of my recent Basque related posts. So I decided to post a recipe for what I think are the best chocolate chip cookies ever.
I was sitting home on my day off from Martin Berasategui and feeling a bit home sick. I was craving some warm, gooey cookies and an ice-cold glass of milk. I had almost everything I needed, but picked up a few missing items from the Eroski (Basque version of Shop Rite) down the street.
As I prepared my mis en place I realized I didn’t have enough butter and I hadn’t bought any. My lazy ass was not going back to the store and I remembered I had some manteca de cerdo Iberico, aka Iberico pig lard (yes that’s right!). And voila! My new secret ingredient. Also, I couldn’t find regular brown sugar so I used what they call azucar moreno, which has the coarse texture of sugar in the raw. It gave the cookies a sort of crunch. They don’t really sell chocolate chips here, but all you need is a bar of good baking chocolate chopped into chunks. I also don’t have a mixer of any kind in my apartment so I had to do it the old fashion way; wooden spoon baby.
With an ice-cold glass of the very best Basque milk, I felt right at home…almost.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
yield: about 2 dozen
prep time: 20 mins
1 3/4 cup flour
3/4 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
11 T butter + 1 T Iberico lard -or- 12 T (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 t vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips or chunks
1 cup walnuts (a must for me, but optional)
1. Preheat oven to 375F. Combine all dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well.
2. Cream butter, lard, and sugars in a large bowl. Add the egg and vanilla extract.
3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, little by little. Once combined add the chocolate and walnuts.
4. Spoon equal size pieces of dough onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. A mini ice cream scoop also works really well. Bake for 9-11 minutes, depending on how chewing or crunchy you like them. Let them cool for about 5 minutes, transfer to a rack and cool for another 5 or 10 minutes, or however long you can resist eating one!