September 13, 2011

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Can you see Patton's out of focus face at the top of the picture? He was willing the cookies to fall off the plate and into his mouth. I keep telling him he can't have chocolate, but he doesn't believe me.

Oh my goodness. No baked good I have ever made has solicited the kind of response that these have. My co-workers are asking for seconds and asking when I will be making more. They really are that good.

I am a little late to the Kim Boyce, Good to the Grain bandwagon. Her whole-grain cookbook came out in early 2010 and has accumulated accolades ever since. I had three adaptations for her whole wheat chocolate chips cookies clipped in my recipe book: the Washington Post's version, a skillet version, and Molly Wizenberg's version. I decided to go with Wizenberg's version because she can do no wrong and there were helpful instructions included.

Remarkably, the hardest part about this recipe was finding 8oz of bittersweet chocolate! I had a 4oz bar of 75% chocolate in the pantry and headed to the grocery assuming it would be easy to find the other 4oz. Silly me. Scharffen Berger's 70% bar is only 3oz. Both Lindt's 70% bar and Ghirardelli's 70% bar were 3.5oz. (Hmm, Ghirardelli's 70% bar online is 4oz. Sneaky!) So I decided on the Lindt bar and I threw in some Nestle semi-sweet chocolate chunks to make up the difference (the bag was almost gone, so it needed a purpose anyway).

It was a little annoying to chop up the chocolate, but I liked the results in the cookies. There were some large areas of chocolate, similar to how it would have turned out with chips, but the chocolate also got incorporated throughout the whole cookie because of the smaller chards from chopping.

One more thing to mention: as Wizenberg mentions in her post, the dough benefits from chilling. In the picture below, the cookie on the left was on the first pan that went in the oven. As you can see, it totally spread out. The cookie on the right was on the last pan that went in the oven and had been chilled for 20-30 minutes. Same amount of dough (I always use my 1 1/2 tablespoon cookie scoop, no matter what the recipe says), but different results. There is certainly nothing wrong with a flatter cookie (and if you like crisper cookies, you would probably prefer flat), but you have to place them further apart on the sheet so they don't all run together, which means you have to put fewer on a sheet and as a result, it takes longer to cook all of the batter. And for impatient people like me, that just doesn't fly.

So, long story short, if you like chocolate chip cookies, but are looking for a slight variation that truly elevates the taste of the cookie, give these a try. But be warned, make sure you have enough supplies on hand to make a second batch!

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