chocolate pecan cookies

photo by whitney loibner

photo by Whitney Loibner

This is not your after school snack cookie.  This cookie is for book club, for your valentine, for your late night trip to the cookie jar.  In other words, this cookie is for adults.  Or mature children, mature being defined here as lover of nuts and very dark chocolate.

When I need to make chocolate chip cookies for an event, my go to recipe is Smitten Kitchen’s favorite chocolate chip cookies.  They are arguably the very best chocolate chip cookie in the whole wide world.  Very. Best.  What makes them so delicious is the chocolate chip to dough ratio is just what you’re looking for in a chocolate chip cookie.  We make these so often that the kids can pretty much make them by themselves now to satisfy their hereditary cookie cravings.

As of late, per conversations with Whitney about how much we love nuts in our cookies, I have adjusted this recipe in a couple of ways that turn these perfect chocolate chip cookies into Alison’s perfect cookie, as in the perfect cookie for me.  I have changed the chocolate chips to Ghirardelli’s 60% cacao chocolate chips, which give the cookie that bite that a dark chocolate lover is looking for.  And I have reversed the measurements for the nuts and chocolate.  At this point you are basically just having a handful of dark chocolate and nuts, with a little cookie dough mixed in.  Hot out of the oven, these cookies make me swoon.  But they are also going to hit the spot alongside a hot cup apres ski coffee in Colorado.  They will be clearly marked, lots of nuts in these cookies…you don’t want them.

In case you are concerned about the freshness of these cookies that I made five days ago for a trip this week, I feel the need to share with you this handy dandy cookie tip I have learned from my sister who daily bakes up some of the best treats on earth at Honey Cafe.

Because she has to get a whole lot done in a short amount of time every morning, she has developed a lot of techniques for doing as much as possible ahead of time without altering the quality of the final product.  Cookie dough tends to dry out in the refrigerator, so she scoops her dough ahead of time onto parchment, flash freezes the balls of dough and then tosses them in a ziplock back in the freezer.  This way all she has to do in the morning is grab the already scooped balls out of the freezer and bake them, a step I saved for the morning before our trip.  This is one tiny little example of the wealth of cooking secrets I have learned from my sister, who has graciously agreed to do a little guest posting for me while I am out.  Lucky for you!

photo by Whitney Loibner

photo by Whitney Loibner

Chocolate Pecan Cookies

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup Ghiradelli 60% cacao chocolate chips

1 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans, toasted and chopped

Beat the sugars and butters together until smooth. Mix in the egg, vanilla, and baking soda.

Stir together the flour and salt, then mix them into the batter. Mix in the chocolate chips and nuts.

Scoop the cookie dough onto parchment-lined baking sheets.

Bake for 18 minutes at 300 degrees, or until pale golden brown.