I have loved cookies since Cookie Monster. I grew up in the ’80s and by Cookie Monster I meant the bakery at Twin Cinema Arcade (now Alabang Town Center). I also vaguely recall Olsen’s cookies. Then there was Mrs. Fields and Keebler’s soft batch. Those were my favorites. And now they’re all gone.
I started baking and made my first yema (and cried about it because it didn’t hold its shape) when I was probably around 10 and continued learning in my Lola’s kitchen. But then college happened and life just flew by. Then came the lockdown and I’m back in the kitchen now in my 40s.
I’m passing on my love for cookies to my nephew Marco and niece Dana. They’ve called this many things—mostly with the word epic. Marco said, “You know when you tasted something and you wish you had infinite supply of it, that’s how good it is.”
So I’m sharing with you the cookie dough recipe that I’ve tried and tested to perfection.
I was aiming for a soft batch, always my favorite kind. But my first try (after many years of not baking) was hard and flat. How many times have you tried making a cookie that looked as flat as a frisbee with little lumps?
Error# 1: I used equal amounts of brown sugar and white sugar. If you’re aiming for soft batch, use more brown sugar. For the improved recipe I used 3/4 cup of brown sugar and 1/4 cup of white sugar.
Error# 2: I burned the bottom. Don’t use a dark cookie sheet. It browns the cookie faster.
Error #3: I overbaked it. It looked perfect at first, I tried it the next day and it’s no longer soft and moist. When I say 10-12 minutes, bake it at a maximum of 12 minutes. It may appear soft and underbaked, but it will bake with the residual heat for another 5 minutes then transfer it to a cooling rack to set.
Error #4: This seems pretty obvious but use quality chocolate chips. I used to just throw in whatever chocolate is available and the cookies tasted different each time. I finally found a brand I like and stuck to it – Callebaut chocolate chip callets or Guittard milk chocolate baking chips.
Bonus tips for a great-tasting (and great-looking) cookie:
Tip#1 Adding cornstarch makes the cookies soft and chewy, and stays that way until you’ve finished them all. The batches I make don’t last long enough for me to find out how long the cookies stay moist and chewy. I’d say keep it up to a week covered and stored at room temperature.
Tip #2 Chilling the cookie dough gives you the perfect spread. The butter solidifies and takes longer to melt. It will prevent the dough from spreading too fast which will result to a flat cookie.
Tip#3 Using an ice cream scoop gives you a perfectly round cookie. Consistency is key so make sure you use the same amount into each scoop and level each one off before placing them on the baking sheet.
Tip#4 Using a silicon baking mat (Silpat) or a non-stick parchment paper makes it easier to do this trick below with the drinking glass.
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup walnuts (optional)
- In a large bowl using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar together on medium speed until combined and creamy
- Beat in the egg and vanilla
- In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt
- Add into the wet ingredients, then beat on low speed until combined
- Cover dough tightly with plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour
- Remove cookie dough from the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Use an ice cream scoop to form the dough into balls and put them on a baking sheet (I recommend using Silpat, a silicon baking sheet)
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, until barely golden brown around the edges. The cookies will look soft, let it cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.
- Let it cool completely and enjoy!