Over the last year or so I’ve tried to be more structured in the way I bake. That might means noting down where a recipe is from, tweaks I’ve made or how I’ve constructed a recipe from various places, rather than just chucking stuff in and hoping for the best and totally failing to replicate it later on, or using a recipe I found online and never being able to find it again. My bullet journal, which I use to order my brain, is basically lovely layout pages interspersed with scribbles covered cake mix. Once those scribbles are a secure method, I write them up and stick them in a huge book my mum and sister gave me when I went to uni (it also has some excellent life tips in from my mum!). Although the system isn’t new, I have been making more of an effort and its been paying off in spades – no more dredging though endless screenshots of recipes and google search histories.
But recently I had a major set back. I couldn’t for the life of me find my favourite chocolate chip cookie recipe. The cookies had malt powder in them and were insanely delicious. After some digging about I found the image pinned to one of my pinterest boards, but when I clicked through – nothing! The blog was no more, and the recipe was gone. I did some more intensive googling to see if anyone else had published the recipe, or if a cached version of the site was available, but it was gone for good.
After sulking for a considerable period of time, I decided to try and recreate them instead. I quickly found that my tub of supermarket brand malted drink powder, the only one I’ve found that doesn’t contain coconut oil, had solidified into a boulder. Even the electric spice grinder couldn’t break it back down again, so I shelved that idea. At this point, I started feeling like maybe I just shouldn’t make these cookies at all and give up.
But a sticky jar of malt syrup from the back of the cupboard and a certain amount of stubbornness came to my rescue! I experimented with various ratios of syrup to sugar to get the texture just right – any more and the cookies are too soft and brown too quickly, any less and the malt flavour doesn’t come through. In fact, I made 5 batches of these cookies, several after I was confident that the recipe was sound, just so I could eat more of them.
Can’t eat eggs? I substituted 3 tbps of aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas) and they came out identical. Made the dough but no time to bake? Stick the dough in the fridge and bake when you are ready. Not a fan of milk chocolate? Use dark instead. I honestly can’t stress how delicious they are. Deep and rich, sweet and salty, complex but satisfying, they’re the type of cookie you won’t be able to stop baking. Much as I still wish I could find the recipe for the cookies these are based on, these are delicious in their own right. The moral of the story does seem to be that you should write down this recipe right now, and then make it over and over.
Malted Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe (Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen)
Ingredients: Malted Chocolate Chip Cookies
113g unsalted butter, at room temperature
50g demerara sugar
150g caster sugar
45g malt extract syrup
1 egg ( or 3 tbsp of aquafaba, the liquid from a can of chickpeas)
1 tsp vanilla extract
220g plain flour
3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp fine salt
225g milk chocolate, chopped into chunks
Flaky salt (optional)
Method: Malted Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Preheat the oven to 175C and line 3-4 trays with baking paper.
- Cream together the butter, sugars and malt extract in a stand mixer for 5 minutes or so, until light.
- Meanwhile in another bowl, put the flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda. Whisk to combine.
- Add the egg and vanilla to the butter mixture and beat to combine.
- Add the flour mixture into the butter mixture in one go. Mix on low until just coming together. Add in the chocolate and beat for a few seconds until fairly evenly incorporated.
- With your hands, take walnut sized lumps of the dough and roll into a ball and place on your prepared baking sheet. Sprinkles the tops with a little flaky salt, if you like. Leave plenty of space as they spread a lot, 4-5 per tray is about right.
- Bake for 8 minutes, then turn the tray 180 degrees and bake for another 2 minutes, until the outsides are turning golden brown. The centres will look pale ad puffed up – as they cool it will collapse back down. Leave to cool on the baking tray. Bake each tray of cookies the same way.