I'm making my favorite chocolate, chocolate chip cookies which are the same as Barefoot Contessa's Chocolate White Chocolate Chunk Cookies except I substitute chocolate chips for the white chocolate chunks. I do this because I always have chocolate chips in the pantry (unless Dave has eaten them all), and second, because I find white chocolate too sweet.
The contrast of the white on dark brown cookie does make for a more enticing-looking cookie, but I prefer the semi-sweet taste of the chocolate chips.
Ina Garten always scoops her cookies with a spring-loaded ice cream scooper or melon baller to get a uniform size. I don't think that's necessary because they don't have to be perfect.
She then presses them gently with her finger (finger dipped in water so the dough won't stick) to get an even spread of the cookies as it cooks while still retaining the nooks and valleys that give this cookie a terrific texture.
These have already been flattened. As you can see, it's a very slight depression.
Yield: about 3 dozen cookies
1/2 lb. room temperature butter
1 C sugar
1 C brown sugar
2 Large (or XL) eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2/3 C cocoa powder, unsweetened
2C flour, unbleached
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2C semi-sweet chocolate chips
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Cream butter in a standing mixer. Add both sugars, eggs, and vanilla. After mixing well, add cocoa powder. Careful, it will float up and dust everything! Toss a kitchen towel over the mixer if you want to catch the dust. Mix the cocoa powder in well.
Gradually add the dry ingredients and be careful not to overbeat. Hand stir in the chocolate chips, scraping the bottom and the sides to mix in any dry ingredients.
Using your wooden spoon or a soup spoon, spoon the batter on to a parchment-lined sheet pan. Don't overcrowd. I usually only put 9 to a half-sheet pan. Wet fingertips and flatten slightly.
Cook for 11 minutes if making 3 dozen cookies. Ina's recipe makes larger cookies and so she cooks hers for 15 minutes. Be sure to not overcook. These are best when they are chewy in the middle but crusty on the edges.
Addendum from May 5, 2013:
Having just written about salt, I think Ina Garten always uses kosher salt, even when she bakes. I use table salt when I bake, and you really can taste the salt in the above cookies. Personally I like this because it creates a complex umami flavor like eating caramels with sea salt. Next time I bake these cookies, maybe I'll try them with Diamond Crystal kosher salt and see if we can taste the difference.