Bangin’ Chocolate Chip Cookies
I happen to know a thing or two when it comes to cookies. Baking them, not so much, but I’ve pretty much mastered the art of eating them.
In elementary school, I had a classmate who’s mom would bake these ridiculously delicious cookies and bring them to share with the entire class. I can still remember how the cookies had these perfectly crispy edges with soft and chewy centers. Despite my many attempts with countless different recipes, I never understood why I could never manage to get my cookies to have that perfect consistency.
Enter Sara Kieffer.
I stumbled upon her Instagram page and instantly fell in love with her amazing desserts. I never ventured into the world of baking because I always felt as though it wasn’t worth the time if the end product just didn’t compare to something I could go out and buy. Why ruin a good thing? However, I kept seeing photos of Sara’s cookies popping up all over my feed... Pictures of giant, crinkled, drool worthy cookies. It wasn’t until a few weeks later, I saw her recipe on the New York Times and I knew I had to try them for myself.
"Pan Bangin' "
Giant Crinkled Chocolate Chip Cookies"
Recipe from the Vanilla Bean Baking Book
The recipe for the cookie itself is quite standard, but it’s actually the technique behind the baking that sets these cookies apart.
“Pan banging” ... this is the term she uses to describe the genius behind her creation.
It literally requires you to intermittently “bang” the cookie pan as it bakes. This allows for the dough to rise and fall, creating the rippled effect. After several “bangs”, you’ll have yourself giant, perfectly crinkled, chewy and crispy-edged cookies— sheer perfection.
So if you look at my cookies, there aren't as many "crinkles" as I had intended, but this was largely due to the fact that I had my 3-month-old, infant sleeping about 10 feet away from the kitchen, making the whole "banging" thing, not very reasonable (unless I wanted to deal with a fussy and tired baby in the middle of baking--learning to pick and choose my battles).
I'll have to make these again, sometime soon, and hopefully will be able to perfect my technique. Still, the cookies turned out nothing short of Ah-maaaazzzing.
Sara Kieffer’s Giant Crinkled Cookies
Recipe from the Vanilla Bean Baking Book:
- 2cups/256 grams all-purpose flour
- ½teaspoon baking soda
- ¾teaspoon salt
- ½pound/227 grams unsalted butter (2 sticks), room temperature
- 1 ½cups/302 grams granulated sugar
- ¼cup/55 grams packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1 ½teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 6ounces/170 grams bittersweet chocolate(about 60 percent cacao solids), chopped into coarse pieces, bits and shards (I only had semi-sweet on hand)
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position. Line 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil, parchment paper or nonstick baking mats.
In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the butter on medium until creamy. Add the granulated and brown sugars and beat on medium until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the egg, vanilla and 2 tablespoons water, and mix on low to combine. Add the flour mixture, and mix on low until combined.
Add the chocolate and mix on low into the batter. (At this point, the dough can be refrigerated for several hours or overnight.)
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Form the dough into 3 1/2-ounce (100-gram) balls (a heaping 1/3 cup each). Place 4 balls an equal distance apart on a prepared pan, and transfer to the freezer for 15 minutes before baking. After you put the first baking sheet in the oven, put the second one in the freezer.
Place the chilled baking sheet in the oven and bake 10 minutes, until the cookies are puffed slightly in the center. Lift the baking sheet and let it drop down against the oven rack, so the edges of the cookies set and the inside falls back down. (This will feel wrong, but trust me.) Bang it down, if necessary, to make the center fall.
After the cookies puff up again, 2 to 3 minutes later, repeat lifting and dropping the pan. Repeat a few more times, every 3 minutes, to create ridges around the edge of the cookie. Bake 16 to 18 minutes total, until the cookies have spread out, and the edges are golden brown, but the centers are much lighter and not fully cooked.
Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack; let cool before removing the cookies from the pan.
Repeat with remaining cookies, using the first sheet pan for the third batch of cookies
& ENJOY! But a word of caution if you lack self control like me... you may end up eating all of them in one sitting. Don't say I didn't warn you. lol