You are here because you, like me, are on a mission. A mission to find the best chocolate chip cookie ever created. In this month’s edition, you will learn of a solid contendor in our quest for the best.
This month’s recipe comes from Jacques Torres, a fairly upscale chocolate company based in New York City, that also has notably delicious chocolate chip cookies. After Gillian told me that these babies were the best C.C.C’s that she’d ever had, and I read similar claims all over the internet, I decided that we had to make them for our February edition.
We found the recipe on a blog called Pia Recipes, and followed almost every direction exactly as written, except for a few things.
- Rather than using bread and pastry flour, we only used all purpose flour (college students on a budget)
- Rather than using chocolate chunks, we used chocolate chips
- We used salted rather than unsalted butter
I’m not sure how these guys would’ve tasted had we followed the recipe more religiously, but I can tell you that even with our modifications, they were pretty delicious. In order to do a true taste test, we invited a few highly qualified cookie connoiseurs to give us their opinions.We used six categories in order to do as comprehensive an examination as possible. They were:
- Butter presence
- Salt presence
- Chocolate chip to cookie ratio
The cookies got fairly good scores in the appearence category, averaging at about 80% out of 100. One taste tester claimed that they looked “delightfully homemade.” Another said they resembled “the perfect chocolate chip cookie-golden and speckled with chocolate chips. Not too thick, not too thin.” Other testers
Unlike the appearence, the size got somewhat conflicting results. While some testers awarded it with 8′s and 9′s, saying that it was “small enough that I could proably eat at least four of these, which is a good thing,” others thought it was “a little too big.” I personally felt like they were just the right size. Unlike the Serious Eats cookies, which were so large that after just one I felt the need to take a nap, these cookies were thinner and lighter, giving them a good balance between feeling satisfied after one and craving a couple more.
Our testers had similar thoughts on the butter presence in this recipe. The general consensus that it was very buttery, perhaps even a little too much so. “Tasty,” claimed one participant, “but maybe a little too much.”
As was expected, the salt presence received different scores from each taster. One person thought that there was “just a tiny bit too much,” while another claimed that she liked her cookies not too sweet, and the saltiness in this one made it her kind of cookie. As a major proponent of salty-sweet contrast, I was a fan of the salt presence in this recipe. That being said, unlike the Serious Eats cookies, which prided themselves on being salty, this recipe called for unsalted butter. If we had followed the recipe as written, they would not have been nearly as salty as they turned out.
Chocolate Chip to Cookie Ratio:
The chocolate chip to cookie ratio received the highest scores of any category in our taste test. Several tasters called it perfect. “You get several chunks of chocolate in one bite.” Gillian and I were fascinated by the high scores in this category. As we made the cookies, she explained to me (and I agreed) that while we both prefer a cookie with more dough than chocolate chips, most people prefer lots of chocolate. Based on the results of this taste test, Gillian must be right!
For the most part, our taste testers enjoyed the texture of these cookies. “Nice crunch”, one partipant asserted. “the inside is so soft and rich”, said another. “I liked that it had the consistency of a sugar cookie, rather than a straightforward chocolate chip cookie texture”, one of our more critical testers told us. Many testers said that it would be better if it was warm, a statement that it’s hard to disagree with. Personally, I felt like this recipe was a bit lacking in the texture department. Rather than being crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, it was pretty much the same all the way through. I felt like the Serious Eats cookies nailed the texture component. Maybe it’s because we refridgerated the dough for an hour.
Overall, this cookie got very positive feedback. One taster claimed that she had “no critiques. I think it’s perfect actually.” Another told us that she was “definitely a fan.” “overall really good”, said someone else. Despite these remarks, when asked if it was the best chocolate chip cookie they had ever tasted, most of our testers said it wasn’t. “It’s really really close”, said one participant. “If presented as a salted chocolate chip cookie, it would be a superior creation”, claimed another.
As far as I’m concerned, this recipe was great. The cookies had a, solid texture, good proportion of salt and butter, and overall great flavor. Were they the best? I don’t think so. They lacked the perfect texture that I think the Serious Eats cookies had, and although the taste was highly enjoyable, it was not perfect.
These Jacques cookies were good, but not good enough to be the best. Stay tuned for next month when the cookie hunter strikes again.
Let the journey continue!