Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookies

IMG_6954.jpg

This cookie is the single biggest reason for creating this website. Since this cookie debuted on the menu at Untitled in the Whitney Museum, it created some serious buzz and numerous requests for the recipe. As a fairly busy chef, I try to be as prompt as I can in responding to my emails and recipe requests, but I realized there was a much better, faster way. Why not share my recipes on an online platform and refer people to it. So thank you Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie for pushing me to start my website and "Miro Bakes"!

Before I share the recipe for this cookie that Sierra Tishgart of Grub Street called "New York's Finest New Chocolate-Chip Cookie" I want to tell you how it came to be. When I signed on to be the opening pastry chef of the Untitled at the new Whitney Museum, I was already the pastry chef at Gramercy Tavern for a couple of years. The beginning at Gramercy was very challenging. I was a 29 year old Serbian guy appointed to lead the pastry department of an iconic American restaurant, following in the  foot steps of such pastry giants as Claudia Fleming and Nancy Olsen. I pushed hard to change the menu. I pulled out all the stops, sometimes going a bit overboard with crazy combinations, little known ingredients and elaborate plating. While most of my colleagues enjoyed these desserts, let's just say that some others were a bit more reluctant. One day, I set out to redo our cookie plate offering. I put out 7 different kinds of cookies, served alongside a small glass jug of ice-cold Batenkill Valley milk with a red and white striped straw.  The effect was remarkable. Not a single person on either the kitchen or service team protested. Every one was on board and the cookie plate would soon became a permanent fixture on the menu.  

So when I started making plans for the desserts at Untitled, I knew I had get a cookie out there.  Untitled is located in the Whitney Museum of American Art, and it only made sense that the food at this new restaurant should be very American. Of course, what could be more iconic than the one dessert the entire world thinks of as purely American- the Chocolate Chip Cookie.  I tried to create what I thought was the Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie. First, bye bye chocolate chips, and hello chocolate chunks. This move allows for larger chunks of chocolate, and the use of higher quality chocolate. And why stop at one kind of chocolate? We added milk and white chocolate to the mix. We played around with different ratios of ingredients and baking techniques, till we had a cookie that was crispy on the outside and gooey in the middle. Finally, we had a killer cookie that everyone liked. Then something clicked. What about all those people who are celiac, or have removed gluten from their diet? We wanted them to be able to enjoy this cookie as well. So, why not simply swap out the regular flour for a gluten free blend? The idea was to have a small batch of gluten free cookie dough scooped and frozen that we could quickly bake off as needed. Right before the restaurant opening, at the dessert tasting with Danny Meyer and Mike Anthony, we baked a small batch of these gluten free versions in addition to ones made with regular flour. They both loved the gluten free version so much that they requested we only go with that one. I wasn't surprised with their decision, as the gluten free one was my preferred choice as well. The substitution of GF flour (which is mainly starch) created a flatter cookie, which meant more crispy surface area, while the middle stayed somehow more gooey, almost molten, when warm.

TRIPLE CHOCOLATE CHUNK COOKIE

IMG_6956.jpg
  • 10oz/283g unsalted butter, such as Kerrygold 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract 
  • 6.5oz/185g organic cane sugar, such as Wholesome*
  • 9.5oz/270g organic light brown cane sugar, such as Wholesome 
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 19oz/539g Gluten Free Flour, such as cup4cup Multipurpose Flour* 
  • 1 tsp baking soda 
  • 9oz/255g dark chocolate chunks, such as Guittard* 
  • 6.5oz/185g milk chocolate chunks, such as Guittard 
  • 4.5oz/128g white chocolate chunks, such as Guittard 
  • coarse sea salt for garnish 

HOW TO MAKE BROWN BUTTER: Melt the butter on a low heat. Let it cook, undisturbed, until all the milk solids separate and fall to the bottom. Continue to cook on a low flame till the milk solids caramelize to a deep amber color, and the butter smells toasty. This step turns plain butter into something altogether more magical and flavorful with caramel/nutty overtones. 

Combine the warm brown butter, vanilla extract, sugars and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and whip with the whisk attachment for a few seconds, to combine. Add the eggs and yolks and whip on medium speed until it looks like thick frosting. This should take about 5 minutes.

Combine gluten free flour and baking soda and whisk to aerate and mix well. Add flour to whipped butter mixture and combine. Add chocolate chunks and mix. Portion cookie dough using a 4oz cookie scoop. Transfer to an appropriate container, cover and refrigerate overnight. It is important that dough sits overnight so it properly hydrates, otherwise it will be too gritty and crack on top as it bakes. It's even better if you freeze the scooped dough for at least a week, as the texture continues to improve. 

When you're ready to bake the cookies, preheat oven to 375°F. Place the cookie dough balls on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. These cookies spread a lot, so be sure to leave substantial space between each, about 4 inches. Bake in the preheated oven for 9-10 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and the entire cookie looks just set. These cookies will be much softer and gooier to the touch than those made with regular flour. Remove them from the oven and let it cool on the baking tray for about 10-15 minutes, till they firm up enough to be picked up without falling apart. 

NOTES:

  • I am committed to using organic sugars in my home and at work, but you could use conventional if that's your preference. I choose organic sugars as I believe they are a better option for us and for our enviroment. I played around with other alternative sugars like coconut palm which makes an excellent substitute for the brown sugar in this recipe. 
  • Not all gluten free flours are made equal. Even the brand we use, cup4cup, has two different blends, the one I suggest above, and another called Wholesome Flour. Both will give you different results in this recipe, so will any other different blend out there. This doesn't mean you can't use other blends, it just means that you cookies might look a bit different. The blend used in this recipe is very fine and soft, plus it contains milk powder which boosts the flavor, color and tender texture. 
  • I prefer to use Guittard or Valrhona chocolates in my home and at work, but you could use any other chocolate you wish. A good quality chocolate will make for a better tasting cookie than one made with palm oil and excess sugars.