Buttery, Sweet and Delicious
It’s called BBQ time, grilling time or roasting time, depending on where you come from. It’s that time of the year when the weather is pleasant, garden chairs are outside, BBQs are smoking and tantalising, aromas waft in the air. “Mmm I can smell BBQ”, becomes a common phrase. Some of us like our steaks rare, others medium and others, well done. But do you ever read the label to confirm whether the steak or beef you are grilling or roasting been mechanically tenderised or not? As far as I know, I don’t, it has never even occurred to me to check labels except for expiry dates and perhaps ingredients?
I was watching news, early morning today and one of the items was “mechanically tenderised beef”. What is mechanically tenderised meat? This is meat that has been run through a machine that punctures it with blades or needles to tenderise it. Apparently, we are more likely to pay a premium for cuts we perceive as more tender. Unfortunately this process can drive bacteria like E. coli O157:H7 from the surface, deep into the centre of the beef, where they are harder to kill, especially if you eat your meat, rare or medium. So it’s highly recommended that you cook your meat up to 71° C (160°F), in the centre and use a meat thermometer to confirm.
But how can you know whether your meat has been mechanically tenderised? Apparently, the needles or blades are so small, they don’t leave obvious marks, so you can’t tell by looking at the meat. And it’s not yet mandatory to label meat that has been mechanically tenderized, although some retailers in the U.S. and Canada are starting to provide labels, voluntarily. You want to read more about mechanically tenderized meat?
Today I want to share the recipe for White Chocolate Chunk cookies. These cookies are buttery (I think too buttery) but at the same time they are so sweet and delicious, I kept on munching and munching until the jar was EMPTY. I have not planned to make them again, because I think they are addictive. I hope you will like them… and make them again.
White Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Makes about: 24 large cookies; Preparation Time: 15 minutes; Baking Time: 15-20 minutes
- 300g (2½ cups, 10 oz) all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
- ½ teaspoon salt (if you are using unsalted butter)
- 250g (1 cup, 9oz, 2¼ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 250g (1¼ cups firmly packed, 9oz) light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla essence (extract)
- 250g (9oz) best quality white chocolate, chopped into chunks
- Preheat the oven to 360°C (180°, Gas 4). Line 2 cookie sheets (trays) with parchment (greaseproof) paper.
- Sift the flour, baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) and salt, if using.
- Beat butter, brown sugar and vanilla essence (extract) with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in the egg.
- Fold in sifted flour, then chocolate. Roll tablespoons of mixture into balls. Place on prepared baking sheets, 7-8cm apart. Bake 15-20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through the baking, until golden. Let cool 5 minutes before transferring onto cooling rack.
- **I weigh the flour and butter, I do not use cup measures as the weight of a cup of flour tends to vary based on individual interpretation, size of cup or publication, (from 125g to 13og to 155g per cup). Cup conversions based on 1 cup = 125g flour so that would be the US cup of 240ml, not the Australian Cup.
Points to Note:
- Please note that oven temperatures are given as a guideline only. You may need to add or reduce the suggested temperature depending on your oven. I baked the cookies at 360°F (180°C) for 15 minutes.
- The final mixture is very soft but not sticky. Use two spoons to scoop the mixture.
- Place biscuits at least 3 inches (8cm) apart as they tend to spread out as they cook.
- I always weigh ingredients, especially the flour and butter. You can use cup measures, but please note if you scoop flour directly from the bag you will end up with 150-185 g of flour instead of the recommended 125g. I suggest you spoon the flour into the cup, heaping it up over the top, then slide a knife across the top to level off the extra. Be careful not to shake or tap the cup to settle down the flour or you will have more than you need. You can also sift the flour first then scoop. My best advice: please use a weighing scale.