Monday, November 3, 2008

Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies

Last year the big thing for baking seemed to be chocolate and salt. This year, salted caramel seems to have taken over. I really wanted to make the Smitten Kitchen Salted Caramel Ice Cream this summer, but we never quite got to that recipe. I also saw a recipe for making salted caramel that seemed pretty awesome, but I have a pretty low tolerance for standing over the stove and stirring stuff, so that was out.

One cool looking recipe I saw involved putting caramels into chocolate cookies and that seemed like an outstanding idea, but the cookies Kelly from Eat Make Read used turned out pretty flat and crispy -- which is my least favorite kind of cookie. I liked the concept though and I couldn't get the idea out of my head tonight so I went with it.

I had a bunch of caramel candy -- the individually wrapped kind -- that I had bought for some baked good or another that I never made. I took a bunch of those and used my kitchen shears to cut them into chocolate-chip-sized pieces, enough for 1 cup. Next I made one of my favorite base chocolate chip cookie recipes, in this case the essential chewy chocolate chip cookie from the King Arthur Flour Cookie book. Once the dough was mixed I add a cup of the caramels, about a cup and half of chocolate chips, and another cup of pecans because as far as I'm concerned nuts are essential to chocolate chip cookies. After everything was mixed up I used my cookie scoop to portion the cookie and then sprinkled some Maldon Salt on top -- just like I would for my favorite Salted Oatmeal Cookie -- and into the oven they went.

The results were awesome. Sweet, salty, chocolaty, chewy and yummy. Chewy chocolate chip cookies with little rivulets of melted caramel running through them. The salt just cut some of the super sweet of the caramel and it all went perfectly with chocolate chips and pecans.

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, room temp
2/3 cup dark brown sugar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsps light corn syrup
1 tbsp cider vinegar
2 large eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup chocolate chip sized caramel pieces
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 375 and line baking sheets (I used insulated and my cookies came our perfect) with parchment paper or silpats.

Cream the butter and the sugars until light and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition, then add the corn syrup, vinegar and extract and mix to combine.

Add the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda and mix until the flour is incorporated. Fold in the caramel, chips and nuts.

Divide the dough by tablespoonfuls on the prepared baking sheets and bake for 10 minutes until they are just set on the edges but still soft in the middle. Remove from the oven and let cool.


burkie said...

after i had one this morning--okay, after i had two--i proclaimed them the best chocolate chip cookies i've ever had. the salt + caramel + chocolate chip + great cookie base = a fabulous dining exeperience. yes, i called a cookie a dining experience. thank you!

burkie said...

oops! i forgot (+ pecans) in the formula above.

Ben said...

very tasty!