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Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies, like many baked goods, call for using both butter and vegetable shortening. When cookie dough is made with butter alone, the cookies start to spread on the pan in the hot oven fairly quickly, because butter melts at a lower temperature than shortening. Cookies made with a combination of butter and shortening spread more slowly, resulting in a cookie with a thicker, puffier shape. Look for trans fat-free shortening, now widely available in supermarkets.

Ingredients:

  • 1 oz. (30 g) unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup (4 1/2 oz./140 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 6 Tbs. (3 oz./90 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 Tbs. vegetable shortening
  • 2/3 cup (5 1/3 oz./165 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz./60 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (6 oz./185 g) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g) coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts
      (optional)

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place the chopped chocolate in the top pan of a double boiler set over but not touching barely simmering water and heat, stirring occasionally, until melted. Let cool.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt until blended.

In another bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed or a wooden spoon, beat together the butter, shortening, brown sugar and granulated sugar until well blended and fluffy. Beat in the melted chocolate. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until blended. Add the flour mixture and stir until just blended. Add the chocolate chips and pecans and continue stirring until just blended.

Drop the dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) apart. Bake the cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until they are puffed but still look moist on top, about 15 minutes. Transfer the pans to wire racks and let cool briefly, then transfer the cookies to the racks and let cool completely. Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Adapted from The Williams-Sonoma Baking Book, edited by Chuck Williams (Oxmoor House, 2009).