Recipe time! I was craving good old fashioned chocolate chip cookies the other day, and being on a diet, I knew I shouldn't reach for my favorite recipe. I turned to my trusty friend, America's Test Kitchen, to help me out. I knew they would, even if their recipe called for the weirdest ingredient I've ever seen in a cookie - stewed dates. Below, you'll see my 4 tablespoons on finely chopped dates.
I also took some other liberties with the recipe, which you'll read about below.
Low-fat Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Cook's Illustrated
1 cup water
4 T. finely chopped dates
3 T. unsalted butter
2 cups flour
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
1 large egg
2 t. vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper
2. Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add dates and simmer until tender and most of the water has evaporated, about 20 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, press the dates through a fine mesh strainer into a medium bowl (you should have about 1/4 cup of puree). Cook butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until nutty brown, about 4 minutes. Let cool.
3.Whisk, flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. With electric mixer running on medium speed, beat melted butter, brown sugar, and date puree in large bowl until well blended. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture on low speed until combined. Beat in chips.
4. Divide cookies into 16 portions and place on cookie sheets.
5. Bake until edges are light brown and centers are soft and puffy, about 15-18 minutes, rotating halfway through.
I made a few things a little differently. I used Bob Green's Best Life Buttery Spread instead of butter. When I tried to brown it, by nature of it being mostly chemical, it didn't brown. It just sputtered in the pan, and I was afraid of getting burned.
You're also supposed to divide it into 18 cookies. I was using a cookie scoop and portioning two scoops per cookie, and it came out to 16. I made up for this by entering the ingredients in the recipe builder on the weight watchers website. My cookies came out to 5 points + each. They might be a little less if you made 18. They might be more if you use real butter.You were also supposed to do this weird thing to each one where you roll it your hand before you bake, and break it in half to make the edges craggy, because otherwise they turn out smooth and shiny, which looks weird, but I was O.K. with weird looking cookies.