Monday, September 23, 2013

Compost Cookies

Compost cookies

Who's up for a week of sweet treats? About this time of year, after weeks of lots and lots of wonderful, fresh seasonal vegetables, I'm usually in the mood for a gear-shift. I've got three great dessert recipes to share with you this week.

First up: compost cookies, one of the famous sweet concoctions from the New York pastry shop chain Momofuku Milk Bar, an offshoot of David Chang's restaurant empire overseen by pastry chef Christina Tosi, one of my personal dessert icons.

Pretzels are one of the salty mix-ins in Compost Cookies.

Compost cookies are a fun idea: mix together a bunch of snacks and sweet bits into one delicious cookie. There are lots of possibilities. I followed Tosi's recipe, which includes pretzels, potato chips and chocolate and butterscotch chips. It's a sweet-and-salty combination that works wonderfully.

While these cookies are magnificent on their own, I actually made them to incorporate as an ingredient in a rather epic dessert. Curious? Come back tomorrow to find out what it is.

Compost Cookies
Adapted from a recipe by Christina Tosi for Momofuku Milk Bar

Note: Tosi's recipe in the link above helpfully includes weight and volume measures for the ingredients. I include the weight measures for larger-quantity ingredients below but not the smaller ones, as I find my kitchen scale too imprecise to make weight measure below tablespoon or so.

2 sticks (16 tbsp.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup (200 g) sugar
2⁄3 cup (150 g) tightly packed light brown sugar
1 tbsp. corn syrup
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1⁄3 cups (225 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 cup (150 g) mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup (100 g) mini butterscotch chips (unable to find mini chips, I used regular size, which worked fine)
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1⁄3 cup (40 g) old-fashioned rolled oats
2 1/2 tsp. ground coffee (I used Peet's Major Dickason blend, which is our usual morning coffee)
2 cups (50 g) potato chips (per Tosi's suggestion, I used Cape Cod chips
1 cup (50 g) pretzel sticks, pulsed in a food processor a few times to break up

1. Combine the butter, sugars, and corn syrup in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium-high speed for 2 to 3 minutes. scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg and vanilla, and beat for 7 to 8 minutes.

2. Reduce speed to low, then add flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. mix until the dough just comes together, no longer than a minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.

3. Add the chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, graham cracker crumbs, oats, and coffee and mix on low speed until just incorporated, about 30 seconds. Add the potato chips and pretzels and mix on low speed until just incorporated.

4. Portion out the dough in 1/3 cup rounds onto a parchment- or silpat-lined baking sheets, leaving about 2-3 inches between cookies. Pat the tops of the cookie dough domes flat. wrap the baking sheets in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to 1 week. (Cookies must be chilled to bake properly).

5. Preheat oven to 375 F. Bake cookies for 18 minutes, at which time they should be spread and puffed, cracked on top and be faintly brown around the edges. Bake longer if necessary. Remove from oven and cool cookies completely on baking sheets before transferring to a plate or air-tight container. Store in the refrigerator, but allow them to warm to room temperature before serving.


  1. These are amazing cookies! Thanks for making them.

  2. O.M.G. Must. Make. Them. And then bicycle 100 miles.