…where reader RS has taken a giant step forward in perfecting the Franco-American chocolate chip cookie. If you’ve ever seen an American baked goods section in, say a Parisian pastry shop, you may remember the very sad, flat looking chocolate chip cookies that typically appear in them. Recently in a post on European butters I suggested that that the sharper melt point of many higher-fat Euro butters (a tendency to go from solid to liquid faster when exposed to heat) probably causes them to spread more in the oven.
Reader RS, an American currently living in France, wrote to say he was experiencing that very problem. We put our heads together to consider what we could do about it, and decided on adding acid (a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice or a little tartaric acid) to the mix. The object: to cause the egg white proteins in the batter to coagulate a little during mixing. The hope was that an American-style cookie could then be achieved without sacrificing fat or flavor.
Well, RS reported today that it worked like a charm. He produced a batch of perfect American-style chocolate chip cookies from his host family using only French ingredients. RS has not weighed back in to report exactly how much acid went into the standard Wakefield recipe, I presume all that will come out in the press conference that’s no doubt underway. But chocolate chip cookie lovers of France take heart. A thick, rich, easy-to-make chocolate chip cookie may be within your grasp!