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Experimental Cookie (Like Carol’s)

by on November 15, 2008 · 37 comments

Hey, it’s the weekend so I’m posting an experiment. It’s a chocolate chip cookie made with a technique I made up – or at least as it applies to cookies. Okay, so a million people may be doing the technique already, but if they are I didn’t know it. It just seemed like a good idea, so I gave it a try and got some interesting results.

What I did was make a basic chocolate chip cookie, but instead of using the usual mixing technique, I cooked the flour and the butter together and made a roux of sorts…..a thick, crumbly not-really-a-roux, but I’m calling it that because making it reminded me of making a roux.

After I made the faux roux, I let it cool completely, put it in the processor, then pulsed in the remaining cookie ingredients. I shaped it into a big ball, put it on a baking sheet, baked it for 18 minutes and came up with this cookie. It’s dry on the outside, but crumbly and soft on the inside.

If you’d like to try it, here’s the recipe. The only problem is, it doesn’t work very well as smaller cookies. The smaller cookies spread more and had a different consistency in the center even when I adjusted the bake time. So I am sorry to say, this recipe makes 1 giant cookie.

You can double the recipe and make two cookies, or perhaps you can quadruple the recipe and make 4, but for the first round, I recommend making one gigantic cookie. Also, if you happen to hate the cookie, you will not have wasted ingredients.

So here goes.

Experimental Cookie Recipe

2 ounces unsalted butter, European style (e.g. Plugra)
3.1 oz all purpose flour (weigh the flour or carefully measure 2/3 cup plus a tsp.)
1/4 scant teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon beaten egg
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
Small handful of chocolate chips – milk chocolate actually taste great here

European style butter works best, but if you don’t have any, you can use regular. Most important tip is to let the cookie cool completely. These aren’t very good served warm. They need to go through the whole cooking and cooling process. And, so you know what to expect going into this, these aren’t chewy.

So start by making the roux. To do this, melt the European style butter in a saucepan set over medium heat. Slowly stir in the flour and stir the flour around in the butter, coating it well, for about 3 minutes. You should end up with a thick, dry, doughy, looking mixture. It will be thicker than a typical roux. Set it aside to cool. At this point, I like to just dump it in the processor bowl and let it cool there.

Add the salt and baking soda to the flour mixture and pulse to mix. Add both sugars. Pulse to mix. Add in the egg and vanilla then pulse until moist. Dump crumbs into a bowl. If mixture is still warm, let it cool before adding the chocolate chips. Mixture should look like a bowl of crumbs, but it will hold together when you form it.

Add the chocolate chips. Use your hands to mold the crumb/chip mixture into a big fat 8 oz ball.

Set the big ball on an insulated cookie sheet and bake at 350 for about 18-20 minutes. You can bake it as few as 18 minutes (for a softer inside) or up to 21. It won’t brown much at all. In fact, it won’t look very tasty. Let the cookie cool on the cookie sheet for about 10 minutes. Transfer it to a rack to cool for another 20 minutes or so, then put it in the refrigerator to hasten the process. Waiting is the hardest part. Remove from the refrigerator and let sit at room temp for a while. Now cut into it with a knife and serve it in little wedges.

Makes 1 giant cookie

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Published on November 15, 2008

{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

VeggieGirl November 15, 2008 at 1:32 pm

Tasty experiment!

Katrina November 15, 2008 at 1:33 pm

I’ve tried it during the testing process and can verify that it’s good! Make yourself A cookie today!

Katrina November 15, 2008 at 1:35 pm

P.S. Still no winner announced on the Savorings giveaway?!

Anna November 15, 2008 at 1:36 pm

Winner will be announced shortly!

Mary November 15, 2008 at 2:02 pm

You are an intrepid adventurer. I never would have though of that! I tip my hat Miss Anna….

Lisa Ernst November 15, 2008 at 2:06 pm

This looks kind of shortbready inside. Is that accurate or just the way it appears in the photo? (I like shortbread cookies quite a bit.)

clumbsycookie November 15, 2008 at 2:19 pm

I’ve made this cookie and I really liked its texture! It’s dense but not in a heavy way and I just think the roux method was really cool.

Katie November 15, 2008 at 2:47 pm

What a novel idea. I haven’t heard of cookies being made like this so you made be the first! Wow that one big cookie.

Emiline November 15, 2008 at 2:57 pm

I love the name, “Experimental Cookie”. It looks really good. I might have to try it when I get home from work tonight.

Karen November 15, 2008 at 3:49 pm

Wow! How experimental! I pretty sure I’ve never seen this technique, looks interesting. Somebody not too long ago blogged about toasting the flour before putting it in cookies, I don’t remember which blog. I don’t think the results were all that great.

Joanna November 15, 2008 at 4:15 pm

This is my kinda cookie! Now we’re talkin. I love giant, dense cookies like these. They make me think of the lovely Levain. This looks more like a knife and fork cookie than a hand cookie, and I’ve never described a cookie that way haha

zoanna November 15, 2008 at 7:28 pm

Since this is one giant cookie with a faux roux twist, may I suggest a (very corny) name for it, as well as how to present it to someone?

1) Call it a Faux Roux Cookie.
2) Put it on a dessert plate.
3) Say to the recipient as you hand him the cookie, “This is a Faux Roux Just Fo’ You.”

Okay, maybe not.

Anna November 15, 2008 at 7:51 pm

Emiline, I don’t know how late you stay up after work, but if you make it, don’t forget to let it cool.

Lisa, I think it is kind of like shortbread. The texture changes depending on how long your bake it. If you underbake it a little, it’s not quite as dry and crumbly. More bake time and it’s like shortbread.

Karen, I tried browning the flour. The browned flour smelled bad. I think the butter keeps the flour from burning.

Zoanna, I am so glad someone else appreciated the term “faux roux”.

Jenn's Baking Chamber November 16, 2008 at 1:10 am

I think your awesome for trying to create a new cookie! props to you! it looks great

Pearl November 16, 2008 at 3:49 am

gorgeous cookies! hopefully we can keep in touch :) they look so amazing!

johngl November 16, 2008 at 8:05 am

I, too, like faux roux
It belongs in a haiku
Shortbread, yes. Yummy.

rebecca November 16, 2008 at 8:05 am

i’m pretty sure no one should ever have to apologize for ‘one giant cookie.’ =)

this looks delicious. nice experiment!

bakingblonde November 16, 2008 at 3:00 pm

What a fun experiment! I love it!!
Not sure when or if I will try it but I really like the idea of experimenting with different mixing methods!

Kathy November 16, 2008 at 6:17 pm

Hi Anna,

I won’t have time to test this out for awhile, but I was thinking:

What if you whipped up an amout of faux roux and, instead of using it as you did, as the dough of the cookie, use it as an add-in. I.e. treat it as you would, say, oatmeal, or corn flakes. (We all really liked the corn flake chocolate chip cookies from your site!)

Just a thought!

I enjoy looking at your site!


runjess November 17, 2008 at 10:07 am

Oooh that looks so good, like a cake/cookie.

Emily Rose November 17, 2008 at 10:38 am

I love how you’re always trying something new- I never would have thought of starting a cookie with a roux- and I’m from New Orleans so we start almost everything with a roux!

hejin November 17, 2008 at 9:05 pm

I’m just curious to know about your experimental process: do you end up with many failed cookies? If you ever experiment again, do detail your trial and error process! I’m sure it’ll be as informative as it’ll be fascinating :)

Anna November 17, 2008 at 9:23 pm

I think things over quite a bit before I execute them, but I still have lots of failures. For instance, I tried toasting the flour without butter. The toasted flour tasted horrible so I threw away the flour without using it.

To save money, I test my experiments in really small batches. If they seem to work, then I scale them back up.

Thanks for the suggestion of detailing my trial and error process. I’ll do that!

Julie November 18, 2008 at 9:48 am

I like the term “faux roux”– fun to say and fun to write! Ya know, it looks like one nice, tasty scone…maybe a little sweeter though.

Leslie November 18, 2008 at 2:44 pm

The first time I tried this, my cookie fell apart. But those were the BEST cookie crumbs I’ve tasted, so I tried it again. The cookie stayed whole this time (not for very long, mind you…that baby was eaten up in no time). Very good idea. :)
I love this website, by the way.

Anna November 18, 2008 at 2:48 pm

Hi Leslie,

Thanks for trying it! I wonder why the first one fell apart. Do you think you might have used a little too much flour? A little less egg? Glad the second one held together :).

Leslie November 19, 2008 at 4:43 pm

I think I didn’t let it sit and cool long enough. I was too eager to taste it. :D
But it might’ve been too much flour as well, because the butter mixture (or the faux roux) was awfully crumbly the first time.
But atleast I got the second one. :)

ashleynicole June 14, 2009 at 1:48 pm

I made this today. I did 4 cookies instead of just 1 or 2. I didnt change a thing as far as ingredients or instructions except that I added a small handful of butterscotch chips. I didnt think it would turn out well, but I was just curious. Suprisingly the cookies look beautiful and taste amazing. My whole family loved this recipe. Its the only one Im going to want to use for a while now. Thanks Anna
I posted the photo on the above link (my allrecipes profile)

Anna June 14, 2009 at 3:12 pm

Hi Ashley,

Thanks for the feedback! I’m glad it worked out well for you. These cookies are definitely different than the usual chocolate chip.

Michelle November 29, 2009 at 8:24 am

Just made this recipe and it was DELICIOUS!! I thought it tasted identical to Carol’s Cookie! Nice work Anna.

Anna November 29, 2009 at 8:31 am

Hi Michelle,

Thanks for trying the experimental cookie. The place where I was buying my Carol’s Cookies stopped selling them and I’ve gotten over my obsession. But I do remember making this one, doing a side by side taste test and thinking the cookies tasted identical. I’m glad the recipe worked for you too.

nancy July 6, 2010 at 2:19 pm

We didn’t think much of this cookie when it came out of the oven (our’s spread more than we’d hoped) BUT true to Anna’s word, we thought it tasted just like a Carol’s Cookie, too. There’s something you’ve captured, Anna, about the grittiness of the sugar. It’s just right-on. Mmmmmm. I really wish we could make smaller cookies. Has anyone tried making these into bar cookies?

cccobsessed September 24, 2010 at 12:35 pm

I have made this cookie atleast 6 times now & have even 4x the batch to freeze baked cookies. A few modifications to help with the Carol Cookie “appearance” but all trials have been tasty. Definitely use european butter & check the grainy/sugary texture before adding the liquids.I wrapped in plastic and fooled my family members who appreciate a good Carol Cookie! I am working/dreaming about a chocolate/caramel version….

Ed April 24, 2011 at 9:20 pm

I was looking for a way to make Carol’s cookies and I stumbled upon your recipe in a discussion thread. I tried it and it turned out great. I never would have thought about the faux roux method. I tried baking halfway in muffin tins and then letting cool and finish the baking on a sheet and they turned out OK but it was a lot of work… Thanks for the recipe and technique.

Anna April 24, 2011 at 9:27 pm

Ed, thanks so much for trying it!! I haven’t gotten a lot of feedback on this cookie and I suspect it’s because so many people haven’t tried Carol’s. So thanks for taking the time to let me know it worked for you. That’s great.

Deni June 10, 2014 at 8:22 pm

Okay, I LOVE Carols Cookies, and I am so sad that I can’t get them all the time (they don’t sell them in my state)- the smallest cookie tin comes to $45 to have it shipped (yikes), so I have been searching the internet for any recipe that can give me a Carols Cookie, and I just want to say…..THANK YOU!!!! This is the ONLY copycat recipe I have found that actually tastes like Carols! I can’t believe it! I am sooooooo happy!! I actually made mine with Bread Flour, and I seriously think it is exactly like Carols- have you tried using Bread Flour? It gives it like a shortbread cookie like texture, but still really chewy inside. Also I used Milk Choc. chips, but they were a little sweet, so next time I am going to use Semi-Sweet (that is what Carols Cookie uses). Also, I let the dough sit in the fridge 24 hours before baking, then after baking and cooling on the counter, placed it in the freezer for another day. Once I was ready to eat it, I thawed it on the counter for 2 hours, then heated it in my toaster oven at 150 until it was warm. And not sure if the aging process makes it taste better, (because I didn’t try it before freezing it), but this is delicious warm. This seems like a lot of work, but when I get the frozen Carols delivered, it is the same process-I heat up my Carols Cookies in the toaster oven after thawing from freezer.

Anna June 12, 2014 at 6:10 pm

Hi Deni, thanks for being brave and trying my experiment.

And yes, I’ve used bread flour. Both types of flour work. I think the bread flour might work a little better. All your tips are great, so thanks for sharing.

Now I just wish I could find the real thing here in Austin. I just saw them at a Chicago Whole Foods, but I haven’t seen them in any Austin stores in the past couple of years.

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