This is the second time I’ve used rye flour to make chocolate chip cookies. The first time was because Dori Greenspan’s description of the Mokonuts Cafe and Bakery’s Rye-Cranberry Chocolate-Chunk Cookies was so enticing that I decided to put aside the prejudicial notion that rye was strictly suitable as the chosen sheath for hot pastrami with mustard and give rye flour cookies a try.
I liked what I scarfed and evangelized on the subject here.
So when I came across L.A. icon Karen Hatfield’s (chef/owner Sycamore Kitchen) Chocolate Chip Rye Cookies I decided to see if my first success with rye flour cookies was a fluke. After all, I still had plenty of rye flour leftover from my Greenspan foray into the subject.
The Greenspan cookies (though amazingly delicious) are filled with shards of melted chocolate and laced with pinpoints of poppy seeds giving them a complex texture blasting with diverse flavors. Making it hard to say exactly what rye flour brings to the recipe.
Rye Flour Cookies
However, the Hatfield recipe doesn’t stray too far from what you expect from a chocolate chip cookie. Making it far more suitable for a taste test. What I found is that the rye flavor is subtle, a bit nutty, and definitely offers an intricacy not achieved with all-purpose flour alone chocolate chip cookies.
However, I also discovered (with research) that rye flour has long been considered a challenge to bakers because of its low gluten content, which can make it more difficult to work with and produce a crumb that can be gummy. But if you experiment with using a mixture of rye and wheat flour in recipes (I read) then you can turn that gummy texture into an advantage.
In the end I I decided that rye flour delivers cookies that have a crisp crust surrounding a chewy-textured center, providing the perfect protection to pockets of molten chocolate. It’s positively the best of the standard-style chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever made. GREG