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Sea Salted Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies

These may just be the best chocolate chip cookies you will ever eat. Food writer Nevin Martell spent a long time engineering this recipe so it would be sweet like a classic Tollhouse, but also nutty, salty, deeply rich, and with a slight chewiness, thanks to the use of bread flour. We dare you to eat just one at a time.

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  • Yield: Two dozen cookies

Ingredients:

  • 16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips or chunks
  • 1 cup Reese's peanut butter chips
  • Flakey sea salt, for sprinkling

Steps:

  1. Step 1

    Gently brown 1 stick (8 tablespoons) of butter in a larger cast iron pan over low heat, stirring regularly, until the butter has a rich, nutty aroma and there are golden bits collecting at the bottom of the pan. Remove the butter from the heat and immediately pour liquid and bits into a small bowl. Let cool for at least 20 minutes.

  2. Step 2

    Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 350º. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  3. Step 3

    Combine the remaining stick (8 tablespoons) of unmelted butter and the brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, reduce the speed to medium-low and beat in the vanilla extract and molasses until fully incorporated.

  4. Step 4

    Pour the cooled brown butter and the granulated sugar into the bowl. Beat for 2 minutes on medium-low speed, until smooth, fluffy, and a light-brown color.

  5. Step 5

    Scrape down the sides of the bowl, reduce the speed to low and add the eggs, beating for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add both flours, kosher salt, and baking soda, and beat on low speed just until everything is incorporated. Add the chocolate chips and peanut butter chips, mixing on low until just incorporated. Do not overmix.

  6. Step 6

    Cover and chill the dough for 30-60 minutes.

  7. Step 7

    Scoop the dough in 3-tablespoon-size balls onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between the balls. Sprinkle each portion of the dough with sea salt.

  8. Step 8

    Bake for 12 minutes, rotating the baking sheets top to bottom and front to back halfway through. You want them to look slightly underdone, still shimmery, and barely cracking. Let the cookies rest on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Wait until they are almost all the way cool before picking up, as they will be delicate while still warm.