The Pungent Ingredient That's Unexpectedly Great In Chocolate Chip Cookies

chocolate chip cookies
chocolate chip cookies - Boblin/Getty Images

Chocolate chip cookies are an all-American classic, but this doesn't mean that you're obligated to stick with the original Toll House cookie recipe forever and ever. Some add-ins not found in Ruth Wakefield's creation actually take the cookie to new heights undreamed of back in 1938: Cayenne pepper adds warmth, and applesauce lends lightness and makes the cookies just a tiny bit healthier, while bacon makes everything better. There are other out-of-the-box chocolate chip cookie ingredients that we're not quite sold on, however, such as tahini — which might be fine if you're a dessert hummus fan (we're not) — and avocado, which is the kind of thing you might enjoy eating if you're Tom Brady (ditto).

Surprisingly enough, however, one ingredient that you might not think would work well in chocolate chip cookies proves to be a perfectly pleasant addition: garlic. While it could be a bit much if you just stirred in chopped garlic along with the chips or added garlic powder to the dry ingredients, most cookie recipes take certain steps to tone down the ingredient's flavor so all you're left with is a hint of pungency that adds just the right amount of complexity without overwhelming the chocolate.

Read more: 13 Store-Bought Ice Cream Bars Ranked From Worst To Best

How To Try Garlic Chocolate Chip Cookies

garlic heads and cloves
garlic heads and cloves - Tim UR/Shutterstock

Ground zero for garlic chocolate chip cookies — and, indeed, for all things garlicky — is Gilroy, California. You're likely to find these cookies sold at the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, which is held every summer in the city that proclaims itself the Garlic Capital of the World, and they can also be purchased at the Gilroy emporium known as Garlic World. Those who have tried them say that the garlic flavor is faint, but the cookies are very tasty.

If you aren't able to schlep out to California just to try a cookie, you always have the option of baking your own. Two Reddit threads posted to r/Old_Recipes deal with a vintage recipe for garlic chip cookies where the garlic cloves are used to infuse honey, which is one way to de-fang the garlic and leave nothing but subtle savory notes. While one commenter who baked the cookies according to the recipe didn't care for them, this seemed to have more to do with the rest of the recipe than the addition of garlic. Another person, who made them with butterscotch chips instead of chocolate ones, called the cookies "incredible." Yet another way to give the cookies garlic flavor involves roasting an entire head of the stuff in oil before adding it to the batter. This will not only serve to mellow out the aromatic ingredient but can add some slightly smoky overtones that balance out the cookie's sweeter flavors.

Read the original article on Mashed.