Monday, November 2, 2009

[Cookie 048] White Chocolate Chunk Cookies

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Okay, look. Let's get this straight. It's not all glamour and glitz around here. Sure, last entry's cookie was all dolled up and fancy, but sometimes I want an ugly cookie that tastes way better than it looks. You know, like the Steve Buscemi of the cookie world--pretty fantastic (for the most part), but definitely not a sight for sore eyes (I just finished watching The Big Lebowski last night, and Fargo a few nights before, so you'll have to excuse me for that seemingly completely out of the blue reference). Anyway, what I'm trying to get at is that sometimes when a delicious cookie is actually one of the uglier, less appealing ones you've made, it makes the cookie taste even better.

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Let me elaborate. As you can see from the photos, this cookie has no eye-catching decorations (like swirls of peanut butter), no beautiful colors (like a chocolate so dark it looks black), and no shape whatsoever (like a perfect, cookie-scoop shaped circle). But this cookie is seriously delicious. Like, really really really good. And the fact that such a homely cookie can be so fabulous just rocks my world.

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Let's talk specifics, yes? This cookie, aside from being extremely tasty in its own right, has just about every ingredient in it known to humans. Oats--check. White chocolate--check. Raisins--check. Coconut--check. Walnuts--check. Plus all your other standard drop cookie components. So when it comes to combining all these tasty add-ins to the cookie dough, you better make sure you have a big mixing bowl and big biceps because this ain't easy. I found it easiest to add each ingredient one at a time (white chocolate chunks, then raisins, then walnuts...) because that way I wouldn't spill too much over the edges of my ever-so-slightly-too-small Pyrex mixing bowl. Once you manage to mix it all together, however, you're in the home stretch. Just plop the dough onto your baking sheet and stick it in the oven. And make sure you don't use a cookie scoop for this one...I think you can figure out why!

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So, right. Back to my Steve Buscemi reference. But first, let me back track a bit and explain to you something else. White chocolate is a rather controversial ingredient, at least in my book, because I view it as more or less a travesty to the name of chocolate. It is not chocolate. No. And I resent it being put in the same category as its far more delicious truly cacao-derived cousin. But the one exception I can make for using white chocolate is in cookies like this. When it's put in cookies, white chocolate becomes that extra flavor that makes the cookie exactly what should be. It's like Steve Buscemi's teeth (bare with me). Completely taken out of context, he has a pretty wacked out set of choppers; but Steve Buscemi without his teeth just wouldn't be half as grand, am I right? Amiright?!

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Anyways, I digress. The point is, this cookie is spectacular and I hope that you actually aren't even reading this entry anymore but have skipped down to the recipe and have already preheated your oven and set your butter out to thaw. If not, do it now. And while you wait for your oven to warm up, pop in Ghostworld and get some Steve Buscemi/Thora Birch/Scarlet Johansson action. Or Reservoir Dogs and get some violent, "you just shot my ear off!" action. Whatever your style...

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White Chocolate-Chunk Cookies
Makes about 4 dozen

Ingredients
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 cups good-quality white chocolate chunks
  • 1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (about 4 ounces)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put butter and sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Mix in eggs one at a time until combined. Stir in vanilla.
  2. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. Gradually stir into butter mixture until combined. Stir in oats, chocolate, coconut, raisins, and walnuts.
  3. Drop batter by heaping tablespoons onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper, spacing about 2 inches apart. Flatten slightly. Bake cookies until golden, 16 to 18 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks for 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to racks to cool completely. Cookies can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature up to 3 days.

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{End Results}
Baking Difficultly: 2.5/5
Ingredient Accessibility: 2/5 (You'll probably have to make a trip to the supermarket, but nothing is difficult to find)
Tastiness: 4.5/5 (I am still drooling)
Attractiveness: 1/5 (Fugly. But don't judge a book by its cover!)
Is it worth it?: Yes. Yes. Yes.

{Pairings}
Drink: Hot Cocoa, to get your real chocolate fix.
Song: The White Whale -- Beirut
Activity: The Big Lebowski? Fargo? Reservoir Dogs? Ghostworld? You get where I'm going with this, right?

16 comments:

Dolce said...

Yes, maybe they are not glamorous... But I though they looked like Levain cookies. And sure look delish.

Lizzie said...

dolce- i had never heard of levain cookies until your comment and i just looked them up...and i need to thank you! i'm definitely going to check that out!

Becky said...

I love your site and your sharing these recipes. Another delicious one to try. Thanks!

hrgottlieb said...
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Jim said...

Hey Liz,

would these work with regular chocolate? they sound great.

Barbara said...

hungry for them. I used to love white chocolate - when I was in college. Now I agree with you but will definitely give these cookies a try.

Monica H said...

Ooh I've made these cookies before but I subbed out dried cranberries for the raisins. They were delicious. Here they are if you'd like to check them out:

http://lickthebowlgood.blogspot.com/2009/03/mouthful-cookies.html

Keep up the good work!

Pam said...

Those look so yummy with chewy goodness!

Enjoy!

A Feast for the Eyes said...

Homely? I think not. Especially with your gorgeous photo at the bottom. I have several M/S cookies recipes I want to make. Here is one more. I made the gingersnaps with raspberry jam last night. Pretty darn good! I'll post it tomorrow.

jfklds said...

your initial Steve Buscemi remark made me laugh out loud. also the part about Buscemi's teeth. i want to eat these cookies right now. your posts keep getting better and better

jfklds said...

oh and I totally thought that cup of coconut was sauer kraut

Lizzie said...

it is sauerkraut.

Patricia Scarpin said...

May I disagree? The cookies look pretty. And white chocolate is good. ;)

Anne said...

Lizze (<- oh don't worry, this time it's intentional!), I don't know what I would do without a healthy, daily dose of your humor. Gurl, I can't wait for Thanksgiving break, during which I fully expect you to recreate all of the cookies you've made so far.

jfklds said...

mmmn white chocolate sauerkraut cookies

National Cookie Network said...

It's been my experience that the ugly cookies are usually the best.

I'll be giving these a try!