Isn’t baking fun? Yes! Duh.
And when it comes to baking, I actually enjoy the failures just as much as the successes. Most of the time.
Take the Milk Bar cookie, for example.
It would be an understatement to say that the story of Me & The Milk Bar Cookie began as a tale of epic failure. Fire reigning from the sky. Swarms of locusts. Clothing rending. Fetal positioning. (Stay with me – there’s chocolate at the end of this story.)
If you’ve stopped by here on a Monday over the past few months, you know that I have no shortage of love for all things Milk Bar: cakes, pies, curds and creams – there’s really nothing for a sugar addict such as myself not to love.
So cookies were going to be a lock, right? Simple to bake, so easy to consume, cookies, to me, are like dessert redux; they’re everything a sweet tooth could want and so much more.
But what was this? My first cookie was a little difficult to manage. My second was noticeably challenging. And things were looking just shy of apocalyptic by the time I had gotten to my third Milk Bar cookie recipe.
It wasn’t that the cookies didn’t taste good – certainly nobody to whom I served them objected. The sweet flavors were always there.
They were all just slightly off – whether it was the texture, the consistency, or the spready spreading into single enormous cookies as they baked. The Milk Bar Cookie was looking to be this baker’s kryptonite and I was not at all happy about it.
So when I saw this Chocolate Chocolate Cookie coming down the pike, I decided to take matters into my own hands; I needed to put my nose to the grindstone and make these cookies do my bidding.
I used all the right ingredients – things were looking good as I added the European-style Plugrá butter that I had finally gotten my hands on. I made adjustments only as necessary: at the last minute I decided to make a change from my own wheelhouse and substitute Mexican chocolate for the straight 55% called for in the recipe.
I shaped the cookies, chilled the dough, and waited and watched closely though the oven window.
I may have chewed a nail or two and paced the length of my kitchen during the 18 minute baking time – I just wanted these cookies to achieve the greatness for which I knew they were ultimately destined. And I personally needed to get this Imperfect Cookie Monkey off my back.
Hey! Take a look at that! Those cookies look pretty good, wouldn’t you say?
It seems that I was able to banish the demons, right the wrongs, and conquer the cookies that have been a bee in my bonnet since Day 1. And let me tell you that the taste of these Chocolate Chocolate Cookies is nothing short of chocolate perfection.
In case you want to conquer these cookies on your own, allow me to share the adjustments that I made to the original recipe which I’ve copied for you below. These adjustments obviously aren’t required, but I feel that they result in a more consistent cookie:
1. I used unsalted European-style butter and reduced the amount from 16 to 13 tablespoons.
2. I substituted 2 tablespoons of light corn syrup for the glucose.
3. I upped the vanilla from 1/4 teaspoon to 1 whole teaspoon.
4. I substituted 1- 3.15 ounce tablet of Mexican chocolate for the 2 ounces of 55% chocolate called for in the recipe.
5. I increased the amount of flour from 1 1/4 cups to 1 1/2 cups.
6. I decreased the amount of cocoa powder from 3/4 cup to 1/2 cup.
7. I reduced the size of the finished cookies from the enormous 1/3 cup original size to about 1/4 cup each.
And, of course, you should also check out my friends’ Milk Bar Monday creations!:
Chocolate Chocolate Cookies
recipe from Momofuku Milk Bar
For the chocolate crumb:
2/3 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. cornstarch
1/2 c. white sugar, granulated
2/3 c. cocoa powder, unsweetened
1 tsp. kosher salt
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
For the cookie dough:
1 c. unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 c. white sugar, granulated
1/4 c. glucose
1 large egg
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
2 oz. 55% chocolate, melted
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. cocoa powder, unsweetened
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 recipe chocolate crumb
To prepare the crumb, preheat the oven to 300°.
Combine the flour, cornstarch, sugar, cocoa powder, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. Add the butter and mix on low until small clusters begin to form.
Spread the clusters on a parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pan. Bake for 20 minutes, breaking up the pieces as needed. The crumbs should still be slightly moist to the touch, they will harden as they cool. Allow the crumbs to cool completely before using or eating. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week at room temperature, or up to 1 month in the fridge.
To prepare the cookie dough, combine the butter, sugar, and glucose in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and cream together on medium-high speed for 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the egg, vanilla, and melted chocolate, and beat for 7 to 8 minutes. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix just until the dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. (Do not walk away from the machine during this step, or you will risk overmixing the dough.) Scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer on low speed, add the chocolate crumbs and mix just until incorporated, about 30 seconds.
Using a one third cup measure, portion out the dough onto a parchment-lined sheet pan. Pat the tops of the cookie dough domes flat. Wrap the sheet pan tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 1 week. Do not bake your cookies from room temperature–they will not bake properly.
Preheat the oven to 375°. Arrange the chilled dough a minimum of 4″ apart on parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pans. Bake for 18 minutes. The cookies will puff, crackle, and spread. If after 18 minutes, the cookies still seem doughy in the center, give them another 1 minute in the oven but not more.
Cool the cookies completely on the sheet pans before transferring to a plate or an airtight container for storage. At room temperature, the cookies will keep fresh for 5 days; in the freezer, they will keep for 1 month.
YIELD: approximately 10-15 cookies