Caton has always been an intuitive cook. And by that I mean he rarely cooks by the book and instead cooks by the seat of his pants.
And it's usually absolutely delicious.
He's been cooking for years but is relatively new to baking so I admit when he started baking by the seat of his pants too, I was skeptical. While cooking can withstand a fair amount of experimentation, baking takes more precision because of the chemistry involved.
Of course he would hear nothing of that and one thing I've learned about kids in the kitchen is that unless the place is in jeopardy of burning down, it's best to keep out.
And that's how these incredible cookies were born.
They use an unconventional oven temperature (360 degrees), and odd amount of salt, only a small amount of beating, and are baked for precisely 11 minutes and 30 seconds (that's in my oven, of course yours could vary a bit). And surprisingly this dough can take four cups of mix-ins and still hold together. That's four cups of tasty goodness baked into these babies.
He's made these cookies over and over (they rarely last 24 hours in our house) and every time they come out perfectly. Which is more than I can say about my by-the-book baking. Hmpf.
Try them. I'm sure you'll love them!
Caton's Quirky Chunky Chip Cookies
Ingredients: 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, slightly softened 1 1/2 cup brown sugar 1/2 white sugar 2 large eggs 2 1/2 tsp vanilla 2 3/4 cups all purpose flour (I prefer unbleached) a heaping 1/2 tsp PLUS a heaping 1/4 tsp kosher salt 1 1/2 tsp baking powder 1 tsp baking soda 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips 1 cup milk chocolate chips 1 cup walnuts (chopped medium-fine) 1 cup dried cherries or cranberries (or raisins if you prefer)
Preheat oven to 360 degrees. Cover two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Stir together dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda and both the heaping 1/2 tsp and the heaping 1/4 tsp of kosher salt) in a medium bowl and set aside.
In mixer bowl, cream the butter and both sugars on medium speed for about 30 seconds (less time if your butter is very soft). Add both eggs and vanilla and beat for about 15 more seconds.
Add in about a quarter of the dry ingredients and gently beat until just mixed through. Add in the remaining dry ingredients in three additional batches, gently beating each time until just mixed through.
Gently mix in walnuts and cherries, then mix in both kinds of chocolate chips.
Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop balls of dough onto parchment covered cookie sheets, about 3" apart.
Bake in middle rack of oven for 11 1/2 minutes, or until just edges begin to slightly brown and the cookies appear set. Remove tray from oven and let sit for about 2 minutes, then move to cooling racks with a spatula.
Enjoy the chunky goodness!