Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip “Soft Batch” Cookies

adapted from Serious Eats

Dessert, Cookies | Yield: 24 cookies
Prep time: 25 min | Cook time: 6 min | Total time: 40 min

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 6 tbsp. (3 oz.) butter, cut into thin, equal slices
  • 1/4 cup (2.25 oz.) peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup (3 oz.) dark corn syrup
  • 1 tbsp. heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • Pinch of course salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, plus more for garnish

Process

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Line two large cookie sheets with parchment.
  2. Sift together flour and cornstarch; set aside.
  3. Heat a medium thick-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the slices of butter and let it completely melt. Cook for another minute or so until the butter is steaming. Turn the heat up slightly, about halfway between medium-low and medium. The butter should start to bubble within a minute or two, increase heat a bit more if necessary. Continue cooking until the butter starts to brown and gives off a nutty smell, about 3-5 more minutes. Watch carefully because the butter can turn from browned to burnt very quickly. Immediately remove the pan from heat and pour the butter into a small bowl to cool.
  4. Tip: Brush the inside of your measuring cup with a bit of the brown butter, the peanut butter and corn syrup will slide out easily. Add the peanut butter, corn syrup and cream to the now empty pan (no need to wash it out) and stir until well combined. Set the pan in a cool spot along with the bowl of brown butter and let both cool for about 10 minutes. It’s important for these components not to be too warm or else the chocolate chips will melt when you add them!
  5. Once both are cooled, stir the brown butter into the peanut butter mixture. If you want, you can pour the butter through a fine strainer to strain out the browned solids. (I tried it strained and not strained and couldn’t really taste much of a difference.)
  6. Stir in brown sugar, vanilla, baking soda and egg yolk and mix until smooth.
  7. Stir in the flour mixture until smooth and well combined, dough will be thick. Fold in the the chocolate chips.
  8. Measure out an even tablespoon of cookie dough and roll into a ball. Place on the baking sheet and flatten with the palm of your hand until it’s between 1/4 and 1/2-inch thick. (These cookies don’t spread or rise much at all so don’t make them too flat.) Repeat with remaining dough. Gently press a few more chocolate chips into the top of each cookie. Once you fill up one cookie sheet with 12 cookies, you can immediately put it in the oven or you can wait and bake both sheets together.
  9. Bake for about 6 minutes. The cookies should be puffed but NOT fully set. Do not overbake.
  10. Cool the cookies directly on the tray for about 10 minutes. Important: While they’re still warm, transfer the cookies to an air-tight container. Trapping the residual heat from the cookies will create steam inside the container. Steaming the cookies results in the best “soft batch” flavor and texture. You can stack them, but separate the layers with wax paper/parchment or else the cookies will stick together. Seal the container and let the cookies “cure” for 24 hours before serving.

Store at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

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