Jacques Torres Chocolate Chip Cookies

Jacques Torres chocolate chip cookies ….. at this point I think it is safe to say I am obsessed!

My obsession started on a recent trip to NYC with my son and his High School choir. Brag warning…They were invited to preform on stage at Carnegie Hall as one of the 10 top ranked HS choirs in the United States.  It was amazing…sorry, had to share.  While singing all over NY we visited Rockefeller Center where I found the Jocque Torres Chocolate shop and purchased for Paul and myself a life changing chocolate chip cookie. Sorry Toll House, it’s been nice knowing you but the bar has been raised.

I wish I had photographed the cookies when I purchased them because my description will not do it justice.  They were about 5″ in diameter and layered with rich dark chocolate in a way that reminded me of layers of rock in the walls where roads have been carved out of a mountain side. When you bite into it, there are layers on the layers of chocolaty goodness. If that’s not enough, there is a salty finish that enhances the flavor in a way that makes it unlike any other chocolate chip cookie.  I even hate to use the term “chip” because the pools of chocolate in these cookies bare NO resemblance to a chip.

So, once home I had to recreate these  cookies OR move to Manhattan.  Finding a recipe was easy enough. Below are two links that will get you to the basic recipe.  Sadly however these recipes are still not producing the exact product we experienced.  The taste is 100% on but the look and texture isn’t right.  KEEP READING  So I will keep making them until I get it right. Everyone needs a purpose in life, right!?

My first attempts produced a fantastic cookie that had a more raised or cake look, similar to the traditional toll house cookies we know and love,  but tasted all grown up.  I tried altering the baking powder (less1/4 tsp) and reduced the granulated sugar and increased the brown sugar in an attempt to add more moisture to create the flatter, chewier cookie.  This resulted in a crunchier cookie on the edges. My next attempt was to increase the butter. Also, from my Mom’s vast experience in her 30 years as a restaurant owner, she insists that freezing the cookies in dough form and baking them from frozen will produce the desired affect.  I’m on it!  I’ll let you know when I get it perfect.

For now, MAKE THESE! Even though they look different from the original I promise you they are the BEST chocolate chip cookie you will ever taste.  WAIT, hold the press! I made them one more time and test my Mothers theory on freezing them.  I went back to the original recipe as it is. I made the balls of dough, put them on the parchment on the cookie sheets and stacked the cookie sheets up with an extra cookie sheet on the top.  I Placed them in the freezer (having a big extra freezer in the basement helps) for a little over an hour then baked them right out of the freezer.  THEY WERE PERFECT!   *I ultimately stayed with the recipe as printed but found that reducing the oven temp to 325° (I have a duel fuel Wolf oven) and watched the time. This first batch was a bit darker than I prefer.  The cookies pictured here war NOT frozen.  I guess I’ll have to make them again…bummer…and photograph them.

Yes, you can do it!  Add that wonderful french goodness, Fleur de sel  Sea salt to the uncooked dough just before it goes into the oven.  Don’t be shy!

Jacques Torres Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

New York Times Jacques Torres Recipe

Here it is in case you don’t want to follow the links.

Adapted from Jacques Torres

Time: 45 minutes (for 1 6-cookie batch), plus at least 24 hours’ chilling

2 cups minus 2 tablespoons (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour

1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour

1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt

2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter

1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract

1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate disks or fèves, at least 60 percent cacao content (see note)

Fleur de sel  Sea salt.

1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.

2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them. Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours. Or if you want them just right make the dough balls and freeze them for at least an hour before baking.  It makes all the difference. Thanks Mom!

3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees *See note above. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Set aside.

4. Scoop 6 3 1/2-ounce mounds of dough (the size of generous golf balls) onto baking sheet, making sure to turn horizontally any chocolate pieces that are poking up; it will make for a more attractive cookie. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown but still soft, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day. Eat warm, with a big napkin.

Yield: 1 1/2 dozen 5-inch cookies.

Note: Disks are sold at Jacques Torres Chocolate; Valrhona fèves, oval-shaped chocolate pieces, are at Whole Foods or William’s and Sonoma have E. Guittard bittersweet chocolate.




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