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Searching For The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie

March 31, 2010

I love the chocolate chip cookie. It is the perfect ratio of chocolate to dough, with a slightly salty undertone. Growing up, on snowdays, my mom would break out the bag of nestle’s chocolate bits and we would dust the kitchen in flour as we baked cookies and ate our way through the bag of chips. As I got older and was trusted to use the oven by myself, I was determined to make the perfect chocolate chip cookie but kept finding that something was off in the Nestle Toll House Cookie Recipe. After trial and error, I determined that it was the sugar that made the difference in this recipe. I took great pride knowing that when I made these perfect chocolate chip cookies they would be devoured by my brother and his friends, when I sent him care packages at college and that after a long week of traveling for business, these cookies would welcome my dad home.

So when I found out I could no longer eat gluten, I was worried chocolate chip cookies would become yet another food of my past. I struggled to work with the recipe I had perfected but the cookies kept crumbling with the rice flour and burning. Even if I was willing to eat these gluten free treats, I couldn’t feed them to my glutenfull friends. Again, I had to revisit my ratios only this time, the flour had to be addressed not just the sugar. I found a recipe for chocolate chip cookies online at  epicurious. I worked with it and it is a great recipe but there were still adjustments to be made. The major change came with my discovery of turbinado sugar. I rarely use brown or white sugar and instead combine the two measurements and only use turbinado sugar. It has become so popular you can find it at almost any supermarket. The second discovery was thanks to Mama G who brought me a package of the glutenous rice flour from Siagon Market in Manchester. This took the grittiness out of the flour mixture and helped the cookies crumble less.  And of course I couldn’t have figured it out without Mark, my loyal taste-tester!

Below is a recipe that is my adaptation of the epicurious recipe. It is a consistent recipe that always comes out well. Best of all, my glutenfull friends and family love the results!

Ingredients

1 cup butter

2/3 cup glutenous rice flour (brown-rice flour will also work but consistency will be slightly grainier)

2/3 cup Tapioca Flour

2/3 Cup Potato Starch

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon xanthan gum

1 cup turbindao sugar

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla

12 ounces Ghiradelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Chips

1 cup finely chopped walnuts (optional)

Parchment paper (cookies bake much better on parchment then they do on greased cookie sheet.

Preparation

Put oven rack in middle position (If baking one cookie sheet at  a time  and preheat oven to 375°F. Cut parchment for 4 cookie sheets.

Whisk together flour mix, baking soda, salt, and xanthan gum in a small bowl. Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until pale and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low and mix in flour mixture until just incorporated, then stir in chips and walnuts if using.

Drop teaspoons of dough onto the baking sheets to make 3 rows of 3 cookies. I find that smaller cookies come out best.

Bake, 1 sheet at a time for best results but 2 sheets is workable,  9 to 15 minutes as oven’s vary. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool and continue the process. I reuse my parchment until I am finished baking. And as we know in the Sebell household, never store cookies in plastic! These are stored best in glass, metal or ceramic.

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