Big chewy cookies packed with chocolate chips, and topped with extra triple chocolate chunks. A real chocolate lover’s dream!
These cookies were inspired by one I ate, rather unexpectedly, in the train station of Guangzhou, China. Towards the end of last year we were travelling back from China to Hong Kong, planning to get our train across the border from the international station. Normally this train journey is a breeze. Stroll up to the ticket booking window, get a ticket for the next train. Hang around in the waiting lounge, queue through immigration, avoid the inevitable stampede when the gates to the train are finally opened, then sit back, relax and within two hours find yourself in back in the friendly easy haven of Hong Kong.
This time though, for reasons were still yet to completely fathom, all the trains were fully booked. We arrived about 9am in the morning, tired and rather grubby after taking an over night train from Guilin. We’d expected to be on a train about 10, back in Hong Kong for lunch time, unpacked and sorted in time for an afternoon nap. Our hearts sunk though when all the ticket windows were closed, a single remaining ticket seller told us everything was booked up until about 6pm. We ran over to the bus station to see if we could jump onto a cross border bus, but no, those too were full.
Resigned, we settled to wait it out. Now Guangzhou station is a big place, but there’s not really anything there, just constant waves of people on the move. In terms of food the choice is limited. You’ll find the usual Chinese station shops selling instant noodles and dried fish strips and a host of fast food outlets; KFC, McDonalds, Burger King. If salty and deep fried is on your wish list, Guangzhou station is the place to be.
There was, however, a tiny beacon of hope. The familiar green of a Starbucks. We retreated inside and hid away in a corner, surviving the day on over priced coffees, and sugary frappuccinos. Feeling a little sorry for myself, I bought the biggest, sweetest, chocolatiest treat I could find. A big cookie like these, with full squares of chocolate in place of little chips or chunks.
Now the concept was great, but the cookie itself wasn’t. It was salty, not in a pleasant salty sweet way, but in a drinking sea water kind of way. The chocolate chunks were bland and uninspiring. The texture wasn’t quite right, a little too dry for a chocolate cookie, a little too much snap, not enough chew. I’ve taken the concept to make these cookies. Big chewy cookies, a little crisp around the edge, soft and tender in the centres.
These are really generously sized cookies. You could make them smaller, but then you wouldn’t have space to pack quite so many squares of chocolate onto the top of them. A bit of brown sugar in the dough makes gives them just a hint of caramel. There’s no need to shape the cookie dough, just put it into evenly sized lumps on the tray and let it spread itself out in cookies.
The middle of the cookie is filled with finely chopped chocolate. Milk, dark and white. This chocolate stays gooey and soft even when the cookie is baked. As soon as they come out of the oven, whole squares of chocolate are pressed into the top of the still warm cookies. Putting them in after baking keeps their shape, and gives you big hearty chunks of chocolate to bite through. I couldn’t decide which type of chocolate to use, so I used all three. To me this makes them the perfect cookie. You get the sweetness of the white chocolate, the creamy milk chocolate, and the rich bitter dark chocolate.
– The large amount of chocolate in these cookies mean that they are delicate to handle until they are completely cool. For this reason it is best to cool them completely on the baking sheets to allow the chocolate to firm up.
- 150g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 100g caster sugar
- 100g soft brown sugar
- 1 medium egg
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 190g plain flour
- 1¼ teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 50g dark chocolate, finely chopped
- 50g milk chocolate, finely chopped
- 50g white chocolate, finely chopped
- 50g dark chocolate, broken into squares
- 50g milk chocolate, broken into squares
- 50g white chocolate, broken into squares
- Cream together the butter and sugars until light and pale.
- Mix in the egg and vanilla extract, followed by the flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt. The mixture should be quite stiff and will come together in a ball.
- Stir in the chopped chocolate.
- Wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge for at least half an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 170c / 150c fan / 325F.
- Divide the mixture into 10 equal balls.
- Spread out onto lined baking sheets. I spread mine out onto 3 sheets, these cookies spread a great deal so make sure you give them lots of space.
- Bake for about 10 minutes until the cookies have spread and are just starting to turn golden around the edges. The middle will still look a little under baked.
- Take them out of the oven, and straight away push squares of chocolate into the top of each cookie.
- Cool completely on the baking sheets, then transfer to an air tight container to store.