3/23/14

double chocolate cookie bars

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Cookie bars obviously one of my baking obsessions.
I've made countless varieties and don't plan on stopping anytime soon.
I haven't made a chocolate version--say what?
I know!
So I took the version that I use all the time, Jacques Torres version and tweaked it a bit to
make it a chocolate--a double chocolate version.
It came out perfect.
And the same rule of thumb applies to this as it does the original version: the longer the dough sits in the fridge to "marinate" the better the flavor.  The process is almost like a souring process, but in a good way; think of if you were to add a hint of buttermilk to a chocolate chip cookie recipe--a nice gentle, sour/twangy flavor in the background.  So good.
And I'm willing to bet if you find a higher cacao chocolate powder it would be even better.
I used a run of the mill chocolate powder: Ghiradelli, but would love to try it with something better/higher cacao.
Yes, this does look like a brownie, kind of tastes like it too, but very light and far more crisp than a brownie.
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For me, this raw version is perfectly fine.
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After baking, it truly needs a couple hours to firm up/set up.

If you dig into this straight out of the oven it will be very gooey and delicate—which isn’t a bad thing. But it’s also very good in a harder, cookie-like version. 


double chocolate cookie bars
(loosely based on jacques torres infamous cc cookie recipe)

1 ½ cups cake flour
1 ½ cups bread flour
½ cup cocoa powder
1 ¼  ts baking soda
1 ½  ts baking powder
1 ½  ts coarse salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
½ cup light brown sugar
½ dark brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups bittersweet chocolate chips (use one with a high cacao like Ghiradelli)
couple handfuls of chopped pecans (or walnuts), optional

Cook Notes:  
I do not recommend using milk chocolate chips in this recipe—it would be overkill sweetness.
I divided the dough into 2/3 and 1/3 piles, as I wanted the top of the cookie bars to have a nice crunch to them.  The 2/3 is the bottom/pressed in layer, and then the 1/3 is left like a crumble topping—loosely placed on top, as I did with the sprinkling of the nuts.
It truly needs a couple hours to firm up/set up.  If you dig into this straight out of the oven it will be very gooey and delicate—which isn’t a bad thing.  
But it’s also very good in a harder, cookie-like version.
Lastly, you all know by now I don't have a mixer so I did this recipe by hand. 
The dough is very tough and hard to mix, so I used my hands--great workout! 
But if you have a mixer, please go ahead and use it.

Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa powder, and salt into a bowl. Set aside.
Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes.
Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds.
Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them.
Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for at least 4 hours- overnight. I highly recommend chilling overnight to let flavors truly meld together.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray a 9 x 13 pan with non-stick spray.
Divide dough into 2 piles: 2/3 and 1/3.
Take the 2/3 dough and line the bottom of the baking pan with it, making sure to get all the corners, making sure there aren’t any holes or gaps in the dough.
Take the 1/3 remaining dough and in clumps, place on the top. Also make sure to take any dough and close up any gaps you see in the corners.
Don’t push the crumble down into the dough, just leave it on the top—it’s ok to have spaces in the crumble—gaps are good on the top, it will let crumbles will bake up nice & crisp. If you want to add nuts then sprinkle on a couple handfuls of chopped nuts.
Bake until golden brown but still soft, roughly 25 – 34 minutes.
Look for golden brown edges, non-jiggly middle.
The middle will be a bit soft, but once it completely cools it won’t be as gooey; it sets up really nice.
You really have to let this cool at least an hour before slicing.
Slice with a sharp knife.
Makes about 20-24 bars depending on how you cut them.

26 comments:

  1. They're the perfect mix between a brownie and a cookie. YUM!

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  2. Yes. Yes! Love your take on Monsieur Torres' recipe. (It's all about the marinating.) :)

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    Love the Apple cheddar muffins
    Already copied corn dog thingy

    And those dbl chocolate bars? Awesome.

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  4. I'm going to have to try crumbling 1/3 of the dough on more of my cookie bars. I usually only do it for jam bars or others where there's a filling of some sort spread on top of the pressed layer, but I like the idea of getting the top a little crispier.

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  5. Ohhh yes. I could certainly have the raw version too!!!!!

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  6. One look at that raw dough and I'm done for, baking is over-rated :)

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  7. oh goodness- these bars look amazing! yum :)

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  8. Did someone say DOUBLE chocolate? I'll be right over.

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  9. these look divine fun texture and love the nuts

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  10. Cookie bars are the best! Love that your crumbled some of the dough on top. Great idea!

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  11. I have a question on the amount of cocoa powder. It just says "1/2 cocoa powder" in the recipe above. I assume we're talking about 1/2 cup of cocoa powder?

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    Replies
    1. Yes 1/2 cup!
      Thanks for noticing that!

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  12. I re falling asleep at my computer trying to get something done. Now these are on my screen and I want to go bake them. Which might at least show I accomplished something today!

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  13. Darling? You make it so difficult to lose weight!

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  14. My son would be all over these. He is a chocolate fanatic! These look so good.

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  15. These look utterly divine - I want one now!

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  16. tall glass of milk required.

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  17. We have a brownie recipe that takes 5 hours (yes F I V E!!!) before it's firm enough to eat. So we just make two batches -- one to gobble immediately, and one to eat when they're properly set up. So we'd do that with these wonderful looking bars, too. ;-) This looks incredible -- thanks.

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  18. Mmm cookie bars! Whenever I bake cookies without using a mixer (which is always), I feel justified in eating an extra piece :)

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  19. are you kidding- I wouldn't be able to wait a few hours for these puppies to cool :) bring on the gooey!

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  20. Did someone say double chocolate cookie bars!? I am so into these babies!

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  21. Love the pecans in these! It's been way too long since the last time I made cookie bars.

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  22. Wow, but these sound delicious, and they are gorgeous!

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  23. Cookie bars are so smart...no one likes to roll a million balls of dough for cookies! Love this variety...chocolate!!! :)

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