a stack of chocolate chip cookies
The Unique Secret Ingredient For The Softest Chocolate Chip Cookies
For the softest chocolate chip cookies, bakers can use a tangzhong, a cooked roux of flour and liquid, which increases dough hydration without compromising structure.
This Asian technique is commonly used in making Japanese milk bread and alters the starch's properties to absorb more liquid, creating a gel that retains moisture during baking.
Cookies made with a tangzhong will have a greater moisture content, allowing them to bake higher due to the increased steam; this method also extends the cookies' freshness.
Tangzhong enhances the softness of baked goods like chocolate chip cookies by increasing hydration without altering the recipe's ingredients.
It's particularly beneficial for recipes with high-fat ingredients, such as butter and eggs, but isn't necessary for items needing a chewier texture and crispy crust, like bagels.
To make a tangzhong, simply cook 10% of the flour content over medium-low heat with twice the amount of liquid for roughly five minutes until a paste has formed.