Alton Brown’s “The Chewy”

For those of you who don’t know, I love Alton Brown (aka AB). I DVR his show Good Eats and I really dig all the science behind the magic that happens in the kitchen.

One of my favorite episodes is “Cookies for Sister Marsha“. In that episode, AB takes the Nestle Tollhouse chocolate chip cookie recipe and makes minor adjustments to the ingredients to make 3 very different cookies, The Thin, The Puffy, and The Chewy. It was very informative episode that stuck in the back of my mind for quite some time. I don’t like thin cookies, but I’ve wanted to try The Puffy and The Chewy since I first saw that episode…

Then, late last year, I saw a chocolate chip cookie comparison on The Way the Cookie Crumbles. (btw, I love comparison posts!) I won’t go into the details here, but Bridget compared 4 highly rated chocolate chip cookie recipes, including AB’s “The Chewy”. And after baking 4 different kinds of chocolate chip cookies and comparing them, she recommended “The Chewy”! I knew it was a sign. With all the holiday cookie baking I did, I haven’t had a chance to get to this cookie until now.

I doubled the recipe and use 1 bag of chocolate chips and 1 bag of chocolate chunks. Hubby thought the cookies were a bit too chocolatey. I say there’s no such thing.

Also, AB uses a #20 portion disher. After some research, I found that is 1.6 oz or about 3 Tbsp of batter. I just used my cookie scoop which is no where near 3 Tbsp of batter. I couldn’t find any markings on my cookie scoop to indicate the portion size (FYI, the portion size indicated the number of portions per quart). Since my cookie scoop was small, I had to watch my cookies very carefully to find their appropriate baking time. After a few underbaked cookies, I decided to bake for 9 minutes at 350 degrees.

I also chilled my dough for 24 hours. No reason specific reason for this, but something came up right after I mixed up the batter so I didn’t get around to baking them until 24 hours later. (In case you also enjoy comparison posts, check out this one from For the Love of Food about chilling chocolate chip cookie dough for 0, 12, 24, and 36 hours – it was prompted by the NY Time chocolate chip article about the search for the perfect chocolate chip recipe.)

These cookies are VERY good. I could eat 10 without even realizing it. I think they were better the second day. I will definitely be making these again and again.

“The Chewy” – from Alton Brown – I made a double batch and got 8 dozen cookies using my cookie scoop
2 sticks unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 375 degrees F (I baked at 350).

Melt the butter in a heavy-bottom medium saucepan over low heat. Sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda and set aside.

Pour the melted butter in the mixer’s work bowl. Add the sugar and brown sugar. Cream the butter and sugars on medium speed (it should look like very thin peanut butter).

Add the egg, yolk, 2 tablespoons milk and vanilla extract and mix until well combined. Slowly incorporate the flour mixture until thoroughly combined (it will look like peanut butter at this point).

Stir in the chocolate chips (I used chips and chunks).

Chill the dough, then scoop onto parchment-lined baking sheets, 6 cookies per sheet (12 for me since I was using a small cookie scoop). Bake for 14 minutes or until golden brown (9 minutes for me), checking the cookies after 5 minutes. Rotate the baking sheet for even browning. Cool completely and store in an airtight container.

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20 Responses to “Daring Bakers take on the Yule Log”

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    1
    Beth G. — December 22, 2007 at 7:58 pm

    Looks great!! I love the history info too 🙂 Congrats you did an awesome job!

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    Gigi — December 22, 2007 at 8:28 pm

    Love the history info and your buttercream looks so silky. Nicely done!

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    MrsPresley — December 23, 2007 at 12:18 am

    good job! rolls like the yule log and the pumpkin roll really aren’t too hard to make, but they’re great to bring to get togethers b/c everyone loves them 🙂

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    Claire — December 23, 2007 at 2:26 am

    Congrats on your first “real” yule log. I wasn’t crazy about the buttercream either, though I did like the coffee flavor!

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    marias23 — December 23, 2007 at 2:27 am

    Yum! Very nice, creamy-looking buttercream. Looks delish! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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    SMJ — December 23, 2007 at 3:04 am

    I went for raspberry inside too – and agree that chocolate frosting would be tastier. Good job!

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    Lis — December 23, 2007 at 3:59 am

    You did an awesome job, Jen!

    Your log turned out so pretty – as did the mushrooms!

    Way to go!

    xoxo

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    Hilda — December 23, 2007 at 2:57 pm

    Your log looks wonderful, so silky creamy. Happy Holidays!

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    ~Amber~ — December 23, 2007 at 4:19 pm

    Your log looks awesome. Congratulations on completing the challenge.

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    Meryl — December 24, 2007 at 2:58 am

    Very pretty! I thought this one was harder than the “Buche” I made in French class too.

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    Lunch Buckets — December 24, 2007 at 5:35 am

    I love your texturing – nice log!

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    Peabody — December 24, 2007 at 9:24 am

    Job well done. I made it with chocolate buttercream and I think it would have gone lovely with raspberry.

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    Cheryl — December 24, 2007 at 6:39 pm

    I love the idea of the raspberry filling with the coffee buttercream. That must have tasted incredible.

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    Dolores — December 26, 2007 at 6:01 am

    As worldly as I thought I was at the time, I never could have attempted anything this complex in high school. You did a great job with your… it looks luscious!

    I hope you had a joyous holiday, and that 2008 brings you health and happiness, laughter and love.

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    Julius — December 26, 2007 at 7:04 am

    Great bûche de Noël and I loved reading your post.

    Happy Holidays!

    Julius from Occasional Baker

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    Tartelette — December 27, 2007 at 6:11 pm

    You aced this challenge like a pro! It looks gorgeous!
    Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

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    Deborah — December 28, 2007 at 1:04 am

    Your filling looks and sounds delicious! I went with chocolate for the outside, and loved it. Great job!

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    Rosa's Yummy Yums — December 28, 2007 at 3:39 pm

    A very pretty log! Well done!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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    Jen Yu — December 31, 2007 at 1:23 am

    Nice work there. I love the combination of raspberry and chocolate – mmmm! Congrats on your challenge and happy new year 🙂

    jen at use real butter

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    Quellia — January 5, 2008 at 3:43 am

    Oooh I love the idea of the raspberry in the log!

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