Whether they’re soft, chewy, and loaded with chunks of dark chocolate or crisp, buttery, and studded with walnuts and chocolate bits, there are few things as delicious as a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie. Although homemade cookies are a universally loved treat, they can be a challenge to make. Most everyone has had an experience where he or she has sifted flour and mixed ingredients exactly as the recipe specifies, only to open the oven door and find that those carefully crafted cookies are spread out, burned, or sunken in the middle. So, how do you ensure that time spent baking from scratch results in perfect chocolate chip cookies?Baking is truly a science. It’s based on chemistry and a number of specific formulas that balance the taste, texture, and moisture in baked goods. Some ingredients create structure and stability; others tenderize. Some ingredients add moisture, and others absorb it. Some ingredients even create leavening (or rise) in baked goods. Use the wrong amount of a certain ingredient or add it at the wrong time and the formula will be altered. You’ll likely still achieve a delicious result, but it may not have the appearance or texture that you expected from your finished baked good.
Many of us haven’t considered chemistry since high school, and the thought of learning the exact science behind baking is daunting — but if you bake often, there are probably a few recipes that you wouldn’t mind perfecting. We think chocolate chip cookies are one of those recipes. With just a few easy-to-accomplish, science-based tips, your homemade chocolate chip cookies will turn out perfectly every time.
Preheat Your Oven
Kristie Collado is The Daily Meal's Cook Editor. Follow her on Twitter @KColladoCook.