Monday, January 7, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookies (with a crazy twist)

A while back I posted a recipe for chocolate cookies with avocado as the "oil." And that got me thinking. When you substitute one thing for another in baking, the results might still be good, but they'll be different. When it comes to the fat in cookies, it can be a pretty big difference.

You see, different types of fats melt at different temperatures, and that affects how much the cookies will spread. Butter melts faster than shortening, so all-butter cookies tend to spread more than the same cookies made with shortening.

Avocado, if used as the fat in cookies, doesn't melt at all. So cookies made with avocado tend to hold their shape.

That's when the lightbulb lit up. I've been trying to find the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe. You see, I prefer a cookie that's a little puffy and a little chewy. Not flat and crisp. I can get close to what I want with some butter and some shortening.

But what about avocado?

I started with the recipe for Toll House Cookies from the back of the package of chips. I substituted avocado for half of the butter - but left the rest of the butter for flavor. I ended up with a cookie that was crisp on the outside with a chewy center.

The only other adjustment I made was that I flattened the cookies after I put them on the cookie sheet. I usually just scoop rough balls of dough and they flatten as they bake - but the avocado cookies didn't flatten. So with the next batch I flattened them, and I got the cookies I wanted.

The cookie dough was a strange shade of green before it was baked, but the cookies browned nicely and the interior was on the yellow side of tan, but they didn't look weird at all.

I'm fascinated by this idea of using avocados as the fat component in baking. It seems like some adjustments have to me made to make the recipes work. But I think it might actually make some recipes better. I think I'll be playing with this more and see how it works out.

Have you ever baked with avocado? Did you like it?