Convection oven cookies

We already told you all about the benefits to using a convection oven as opposed to a conventional oven. The flowing hot air means food cooks quicker and more evenly. This is especially true for a batch of cookies. You may have found that some cookie recipes tell you to turn the pans around halfway through cooking time so that the cookies sitting at the front of the tray can take in more heat during the second half of baking.

However, this is inconvenient and also means that you have to hang around watching the cookies until they need to be switched. Hence, convection ovens are a favourite among bakers.

For the most part, bake time for cookie recipes can be about the same whether you’re using a convection or conventional oven; though you may want to check them a couple minutes before the time is up as some recipes require less time in convection ovens.

We’re sure you have your go-to recipe, but we find that chocolate chip cookies are classic and always a crowd favourite so we recommend this newly discovered (to us, anyway) recipe from celebrity chef Michael Smith’s new cookbook, Chef Michael Smith’s Kitchen: 100 of my favourite recipes.

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes about 18 cookies (depending on size)

½ cup of butter (1 stick), at room temperature
2 cups of brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1-1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
¼ teaspoon of salt
2 cups of chocolate chips

Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Lightly grease cookie sheet.

With an electric mixer, beat the butter with the sugar until smooth and creamy. Whisk in the egg and vanilla until everything is combined well.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt, evenly distributing the finer powders among the coarser flour. Scrape down the butter bowl and gradually add the flour mix, beating just until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips with a spoon.

Scoop out a ball of the dough with a small spoon, roll it briefly in your hand into an even ball, then place it on the cookie sheet. Flatten the ball slightly. Repeat, leaving 3 or 4 inches (8 to 10 cm) in between the balls for the cookies to expand as they bake. Bake for exactly 12 minutes. Cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheet, then remove and cool further on a rack or a folded newspaper. Try at least one while it’s still warm and oozing, but for the best texture wait until the batch cools. Serve and share!

KITCHEN TIP: This cookie recipe promotes chewiness in two ways. It calls for a bit more sugar than normal – sugar absorbs moisture and helps the cookies stay soft and pliant. The cookies are also baked quickly and are removed from the oven before the sugar has a chance to fully caramelize. The more caramelized the sugar, the crisper the cookie becomes as it cools.

For more recipe ideas to make the most of your convection oven, visit www.scratchanddent.ca or stop by the store at 407 Gage Avenue, Unit #4 in Kitchener. A friendly staff member would be happy to help you or take your questions at 519-743-3623.