I have always found a chocolate chip cookie a bit overrated. They were always either too bendy, like those 5 for a pound, supermarket bakery cookies that almost bend in half before they snap, or too brittle like a classic pack of Maryland Cookies. Well I read somewhere that these were the best chocolate chip cookie recipe and despite never being a huge cookie fan, I bought Claire Ptak’s The Violet Bakery Cookbook for this recipe.
For a short background, Claire is ex-Chez Panisse chef who started a market stall and later, a bricks and mortar shop in Hackney. Claire opts for interesting flours and sugars but these recipes aren’t difficult or faffy.. just intriguing (and delicious). Megan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex also requested that Claire make her lemon elderflower wedding cake which is quite the coup.
So these egg yolk chocolate chip cookies contain three egg yolks. I have done some research and most recipes usually contain one whole egg. So these cookies should be much richer than your average cookie. Claire also advises not too overmix the butter and sugar as we’re making biscuits not cake which is useful to note. The cookie dough is divided into 16 little balls and frozen prior to baking. At this stage, you can leave them in the freezer ready to bake from frozen at a greedy moment’s notice. The trick is to take them out of the oven when they are crisp at the edge and still soft in the middle as the’ll firm when they cool. Ignore your interest to put them back in the oven. If they’re too firm out the oven – you may as well have bought Maryland cookies. Tasty, but not perfect.
Rich from the butter and egg yolk, lightly caramel flavour from the brown sugar and just salty enough. Texture wise, these cookies are satisfyingly crisp at the edge and soft in the middle so they’re robust enough to hold their shape. Excuse the hyperbole, but these are absolutely the most delicious chocolate chip cookies and I can’t imagine ever wanting to use another recipe. Sorry every other food writer, I’m just not interested.
There’ll always be a place in my heart for a triple chocolate or oatmeal cookie recipe, but for your basic chocolate chip – these egg yolk cookies cannot be beaten. If The Violet Bakery Cookbook had been released before Felicity Cloake found her Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie, I think she would have just used this recipe.
Waste not, want not
The remaining egg whites can be used to make Coconut Macaroons as recommended by Claire herself (found in the same cookbook – also very delicious). I actually used the egg whites to make Alison Roman’s Not-so-sweet Savoury Granola which conveniently uses three egg whites to make the granola extra crispy.