Aside from the fact that these have the perfect c.c. cookie structure (chewy in the middle with a delicate caramel-like crisp at the tips of the edges) they have a secret weapon in the form of toasted, ground pecans. I have used nuts in cookies several times but never had I thought to toast them first. Toasted nuts are an amazing addition to salads so I can't believe that it never crossed my mind to use them in cookie recipes. When nuts are perfectly toasted, their flavour is multiplied by 5 and as long as they don't cross the over done threshold, they acquire a divine ever-so-subtle bitterness. My sister doesn't like nuts, I love them. But these promised to be adored by both parties. Just to be sure, I ran my pecans through a mini-food prep so they would be more inconspicuous. We both gave them a gooey, chocolaty thumbs up. She did not even know that there were sneaky nuts inside until I brought it up. What she did notice was the richer texture and a bitter/sweet taste coming from the dough itself. These should bring happiness to just about every cookie lover in your circle.
- 1 1/4 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup of butter (1 stick )
- 1/2 tsp. of sea salt
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 1/2 cup of firmly packed light sugar (I only had dark)
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp. of vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp. of baking Soda
- 1 1/2 cups of chopped, bittersweet chocolate
- 1 cup of *toasted*, chopped pecans (or walnuts)
* To toast the nuts: Preheat the oven to 350F. Spread nuts out in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake for 7-10 minutes. Shake the pan a bit half-way through.*
Adjust the oven rack to the top third of the oven and *preheat to 300F*. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars together until smooth. Add the egg, vanilla, and baking Soda. Beat to incorporate. Mix in the flour mixture until all the white streaks have disappeared. Stir in the chopped chocolate and nuts. I ran the cooled, toasted pecans through a mini-food prep. until they were finely ground.
*I refrigerated the cookie dough for an hour but you may proceed without that step if you are in a hurry.*
Scoop out about 2 Tbsp. of dough for each cookie and place them 4 inches apart on the cookie sheet. Bake for 18 minutes or until pale, golden brown. My cookies were done after 15 minutes so keep checking on them. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. These are fabulous while still warm but more complex and 'dense' on the following day.