I always say in my classes..” If you have the best ingredients and tools you can make anything perfect”. The differences in a good cookie and an award winning cookie is the ingredients I use. In the recipe I have placed hyperlinks as to the best items I use. Here is a list and why.
Silpat: These are silicone mats that you make your cookies on. The first came from France. When I worked in my first French ran kitchen the pastry chef had one since they were $50 at the time. They do last a life time.
Half-Sheet Bun Pan: These will fit in most all ovens. They have sides so the cookies will not fall off when you pull them out of the oven. Heavy duty thickness they will last forever. Get a few sets! The Silpats fit perfectly in them.
#20 Disher: Also known as a portion scoop. The number is in the “flipper” which means how many scoops you get out of a quart of something like ice cream or mashed potatoes. DO not use these as ice cream scoops as the flippers will break. The come in sizes 6 to 100. a number 100 is very small.. enough for a bonbon.
Belgium Chocolate Chunks: Pastry chefs have been using these for years. We melt the chunks down for icings and desserts. They are pricy.. But you are worth a real chocolate chunk.
Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract: Ok. let’s face it. Vanilla is skyrocketing. By the time you buy a bottle the price will change in a day or two. Nielsen-Massey is the best on earth unless you make your own from beans that you have harvested in the jungles in Madagascar (Ok I have done this). Honestly, for the full flavor if you use another vanilla you will not get that perfect cookie. And seriously… You use less than 20 cents per batch. It is just the initial outlay.
Nielsen-Massey Pure Almond Extract:: A few years back N-M started making extracts. Lemon, Orange, Cinnamon.. Almond. Not fake tasting what’s so ever. Try all of them!