Cookie longevity?

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by brooksms, Aug 19, 2018.

  1. brooksms

    brooksms

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    Home baker.
    I'm wanting to start a baking business selling large individual cookies/bars/brownies and taking batch orders for gifts/events. I'm so close to the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe! It came out super thick with nicely crunchy edges and a soft center. However, once cooled to room temp, the middle is still great but the edges absorb some moisture and seem a little...stale? They just don't seem special at room temp! They're to die for fresh from the oven but I can't imagine trying a cooled sample and going back for more. Does anyone have suggestions for adjusting this recipe so they'll be just as great a few hours after being baked?

    • 112g unsalted butter, cubed, cold

    • 70g light brown sugar

    • 45 white or cane sugar

    • 1/2 tsp vanilla

    • 1 egg, cold

    • 160g a.p. flour

    • 1/2 tsp baking soda

    • 1/2 tsp flaky salt

    • 6 oz chocolate

      These ones were definitely over-baked but just to give you an idea:


     
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  2. sgsvirgil

    sgsvirgil

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    There are plenty of pro bakers in here that know a lot more about baking than I do. So, any of you guys please feel free to correct me if I am wrong. But, from your pics, the bottom of the cookie is more done than the rest. That's usually a sign that your oven temp may be too high and the hot cookie sheet is cooking the bottom of the cookie faster than the oven cooks the rest of the cookie.

    Try backing down the oven temp in 10 degree increments and adjusting the cook time as necessary. Its going to involve some trial and error.

    Another thing you could try is investing in a sil-pat and/or a good baking sheet.

    Good luck! :)
     
  3. Science27

    Science27

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    I would try letting them sit for a day wrapped. I do this with quickbreads and muffins. It kind of redistributes the fat and moisture but still has a fresh mouth feel.
     
  4. Pat Pat

    Pat Pat

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    Your recipe looks similar to the typical chocolate chip cookies recipes, but your result looks very different.

    I'll have to try out your recipe before making suggestions...
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2018
  5. brooksms

    brooksms

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    Thanks for the suggestions! The cookies in the picture are three different sizes (3, 4 & 5 oz) so the bottom one was in the oven longer. I loved the initial crunch and flavor from that browning but unfortunately it makes my issue worse! I've baked them at various times/temps and it certainly helped but I think there's just something missing from the recipe.
     
  6. brooksms

    brooksms

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    I'm trying to keep them as thick as possible and relatively large. These are 3, 4 & 5 oz. I grew up with this recipe and don't remember ever noticing a dry edge on my mom's once cooled. I've now realized it's because she put in 2x the chocolate! The extra mix-ins break up the edge so it's not as noticeable. I'm still wondering if there's something I could change to improve it more while maintaining thickness. Higher temp & shorter oven time helps but I find it hard to tell when to take them out. With high temps there's a short window between completely raw center and one that will set once cool.
     
  7. brooksms

    brooksms

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    My plan was to bake them and deliver or sell same-day so I'm hoping to figure out a recipe which doesn't require any special treatment post-oven. That could be great for ones meant to stay at home though!
     
  8. azenjoys

    azenjoys

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    Did you end up solving this problem or are you still looking for ideas?
     
  9. azenjoys

    azenjoys

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    I'd suggest maybe looking at changing the balance of leavening (reducing the baking soda and adding in some baking powder as a replacement) as a possible solution instead of changing the baking time/temp which might be more likely to leave the centers underdone. Too much baking soda can cause that kind of over-browning on the bottom/under-baking on the tops which then leads to an imbalance of moisture that can cause the crispy parts to absorb moisture from the moist parts leading to stale mouthfeel.

    Also, just looking at your base formula it doesn't look like you have enough acidity (in the form of brown sugar) to fully activate the amount of soda you're using anyway. For me, 1/4 tsp baking soda would be the max if I only had 70 g brown sug.

    General rules for ratio of acid to soda are here: https://www.kingarthurflour.com/tips/quick-bread-primer.html and here: https://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipe/leaveners.html. Count sugar as a weight not a structural ingredient even though in your product it is serving a structural role (aka getting mechanical aeration from creaming) because you're making cookies rather than quick breads as in the first article.

    Serious Eats has fantastic series on cookie science including two in depth articles on baking soda/baking powder that would also be relevant.

    Do you get any off flavors in your final (baked) product from the soda? Soapiness? Tongue tingling? Taste the cookie part without the chocolate part for a more accurate read. Given the ratio you're using, I'm not sure how you wouldn't get those off flavors since there just isn't enough acid to fully neutralize the soda.
     
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