Chocolate Ganache Chunk Cookies

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These are my top five favorite chocolate chip cookies:

  1. New York Times chocolate chip cookie
  2. Smitten Kitchen’s Consummate chocolate chip cookie
  3. Levain Bakery’s walnut chocolate chip cookie
  4. Cook’s Illustrated chocolate chip cookie
  5. Magical Marvelous Memorable cookies from Food52

Growing up and in my house now, when I get the itch to bake and I ask what kind of cookies people want, everyone always wants chocolate chip cookies. So like many people I’ve had my fair share of chocolate chip cookie experimenting. I like my chocolate chip cookies big and doughy and warm with a bit of a crisp exterior. This past summer I went to New York and sought out the famous Levain Bakery cookies. I am one of those ridiculous people who will wait in line for ice cream or doughnuts or cake or whatever. Out of my aunt, mom, cousin, and two sisters, I convinced one sister to stand in line with me to wait for the famed cookie. It was so worth the wait. The walnut chocolate chip isn’t the only good one, the chocolate peanut butter chip cookie is also exceptional. The other four chocolate chip cookies that made my top 5 list are the New York Times recipe. The magic happens by using cake and bread flour and resting the dough for many hours. The Smitten Kitchen is a slight adaptation of the New York Times cookie but also amazing. Cook’s Illustrated of course and then last is a sort of compost chocolate chip cookie using granola from Food52.

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I eyed the recipe for this post a while ago. I was struck by the addition of 4 egg yolks and the drool-worthy pictures. I discovered that in place of using chocolate chips in cookies it is possible to use chopped up refrigerated chocolate butter cream frosting and chocolate ganache. So when I mess up melting chocolate and it turns grainy and separates, I try and save it by adding a bit of cream and butter, I do not throw it away. I put the failed mess in a container and pop it in the freezer. That way when I want to make chocolate chip cookies but don’t want to buy or don’t have chocolate chunks or chocolate coins I can just chop up this messed up chocolate and throw it into the dough. It works great. And I feel accomplished because I transformed grainy messed up chocolate into something grand.

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So I used ganache in this recipe and it’s f-ing delicious. It caused the cookies to spread quite a bit. But the richness of ganache is a decadent accompaniment to the 4 egg yolks. In other words, not for the faint of heart.

Chocolate Ganache Chunk Cookies - slightly adapted from this Saveur recipe

2 1/4 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks of butter (16 tablespoons), room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 egg yolks
1 to 1 1/2 cups refrigerated chocolate ganache or chocolate chunks/chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment (or a hand mixer), beat 
butter and sugars for a few minutes till light and fluffy. Add the egg 
yolks one by one until each is fully incorporated before adding the next.
Add the vanilla.

Stop mixer and add flour then baking soda and salt on top of the flour.
Start mixer again and mix until dough just comes together.
Throw in the chocolate ganache chunks or whatever chocolate bits you are
using and mix for just a few second more.
Drop by spoonful onto cookie sheet or refrigerate dough and then bake for
10 to 12 minutes. 

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