As the nights start to draw longer and the languid, carefree days of summer start to fade away, there’s one thing that gives me solace.
Baking season is only just beginning!
And what better way to welcome the cooler months than playing around with a batch of cookie dough and getting your oven fired up for a bit of simple baking fun.
If you’re a little worried about the benefits of salting your cookies, do what a friend of mine did and split a batch of cookies — half with salt and half without — and compare the two. I’ll be very surprised if you don’t love the salted cookies more. My friend couldn’t stop raving about them.
Be warned. These cookies are dangerously addictive.
Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies
makes about 10 huge cookies
At the risk of being kicked out of the dark chocolate lovers club, these cookies are actually better with a lower cocoa content chocolate. I used a bittersweet or 58% cocoa chocolate and they were just right.
These cookies are quite large, but don’t be tempted to make them smaller – they lose some of their appeal if you make them smaller. Much better to be able to break off a chunk to share.
Even if you only bake once a year, I’d highly recommend investing in a set of kitchen scales. They aren’t very expensive these days and they make life so much easier and are quicker than messing around with cups and spoons. They’re also a million times more accurate which means your baking is going to be more reliable and, more importantly, delicious!
5 oz (150 g) unsalted butter, softened
9 oz (250 g) light brown sugar
8 oz (225 g) plain all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon bicarb soda
225-285 g (8-10 oz) dark chocolate
Whizz butter and sugar in a food processor or stand mixer until light and creamy. Add egg and mix until well combined.
Add 3/4 teaspoon baking powder and 3/4 teaspoon bicarb soda to the flour and mix to combine.
Fold butter mixture into the flour until only just combined.
Chop chocolate into chunks and add to the dough. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes but no longer than 72 hours.
When you’re ready to bake, preheat oven to 180 C /350 F. Line two baking sheets or trays with parchment paper.
Scoop 1/3 cup balls of dough and place on the prepared trays. Allow plenty of room for them to spread. Sprinkle liberally with sea salt flakes.
Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until cookies are golden. The bottom tray may need a little longer. Cool on the tray.
Jules Clancy is a qualified Food Scientist and the creator of The Stonesoup Virtual Cookery School. She blogs about simple 5 ingredients recipes that can mostly be prepared in 10 minutes over at Stonesoup.