Archive for: guittard
Butterscotch chips are something of a novelty in the chocolate chip aisle at the grocery store. Butterscotch itself is a thick dessert syrup made with brown sugar and butter. It has a rich, buttery sweetness that goes well with many other flavors. Butterscotch chips typically have a brown sugar and butter flavor to them and are a much easier way to add some sweetness to a recipe than dealing with butterscotch syrup (which is much more difficult to mix into a batch of cookies!).
Butterscotch chips are generally made with sugar, some type of vegetable shortening, milk, natural/artificial flavorings and colorings to capture that amber butterscotch color. Guittard’s Butterscotch Chips are no exception, but unlike other butterscotch chips they use real vanilla and, while sweet, don’t have an artificial super-sweetness to them that some other butterscotch chips do. You can eat them straight out of the bag (which I wouldn’t necessarily recommend with some of the sweeter chip brands) or incorporate them into a favorite recipe. Besides the vanilla, you can easily taste notes of brown sugar/molasses with a hint of dairy in these. They are a pale amber color in the bag and bake up to be a bright orange. Some butterscotch chips I’ve baked with remain hard even after baking, but these soften up fairly quickly in the oven and leave you with a much creamier overall feel – in addition to a good butterscotch flavor – than similar chips of other brands.
Guittard’s White Chocolate Wafers are some of my favorite chocolates to use in the kitchen. White chocolate is chocolate that has no cocoa solids in it. It is made with cocoa butter – the natural fat that gives chocolate its silky melt – sugar, milk and vanilla. It is much easier to find a decent milk or dark chocolate than it is to find a good white chocolate, and coupled with the fact that you can use cocoa powder to add a chocolate flavor to many recipes without needing any solid chocolate, this might be why white chocolate isn’t used quite as commonly as its darker cousins.
The Guittard White Chocolate just might make you want to use more white chocolate in your baking. The chocolate smells like milk, cream and vanilla, and all of these carry over into the flavor of the chocolate. It is sweet, but not cloying in the least, and has a very smooth melt to it. The amount of cocoa butter in the chocolate is what gives it its melt, although the disc shape of the chocolates helps a lot. The discs are not more than 3/4-inch across and are quite thin. They melt very easily – much more easily than the cheaper, sweeter white chocolates I’ve tried – with a little bit of heat, so they can easily be incorporated into recipes. You can chop them and use them as chocolate chips, although Guittard also sells white chocolate chips pre-bagged.
These chocolate wafers are sold online (scroll down the page), but are also often sold in specialty baking stores. I’ve seen them in Williams Sonoma and at Cost Plus World Market before, too.
It’s not that easy to find giant chocolate chips, and while there is some variation in size from brand to brand, most chocolate chips come in a fairly standard size and shape. Guittard’s Super Cookie Chips (scroll down to the bottom of the page for the listing) fit the bill nicely if you’re looking to go large. These chocolate chips don’t quite turn your cookies into the pastry version of a superhero, but they are a super-sized take on a chocolate chip that provides a tasty twist to an otherwise familiar recipe. Each of the semisweet chips is large and flat, like three or four regular chocolate chips smushed into one. Since they are so much larger than regular chocolate chips, more chocolate gets into each bite of cookie, as the chocolate is spread throughout the dough in a way that smaller chips just can’t quite achieve.
If you like to much on chocolate chips by the handful while you’re baking, these are a really good choice. The chocolate chips are almost like wafers (very thick, chocolaty wafers) and they start to melt on your tongue almost immediately. The only drawback to these chips is that they don’t work particularly well for small cookies. The discs are just too big if you really like your cookies to be bite-sized. Fortunately, you can give them a quick chop with a knife if you really need something small, but otherwise you may as well take advantage of the super sized chips and bake some super sized cookies to match them.
Semisweet chocolate is the standard for chocolate chips. Neither too sweet nor too dark, it appeals to everyone and complements most recipes. If you want something a little different, you either have to hunt around to find a bag of specialty chocolate chips or chop up a bar of chocolate into chunks to stir into your cookie dough. Dark chocolate lovers should keep an eye out for the new Extra Dark Chocolate Chips from Guittard the next time you find yourself in need of chocolate chips for baking. These chocolate chips have a much more intense chocolate flavor than semisweet chocolate chips, and come in a very convenient package.
The Extra Dark Chocolate Chips are 63% cacao. Guittard doesn’t give a cacao percentage on their semisweet chocolate chips, which I used for a comparison, but the dark chips are noticeably less sweet. They have a slight fruitiness and a slight bitterness to them when eaten plain, though neither element stands out really strongly once the chips have been baked into something, and are a nice change from semisweet chocolate chips. They’re especially good in double chocolate cookies, where you want to maximize the cocoa flavor.
These chips might be a bit hard to find in stores, but some specialty cooking/baking stores carry them and you can find them at some online retailers, as well.
There is very little chance that Guittard‘s Cocoa Rouge cocoa powder will be mistaken for any other brand. The powder is a rich mahogany color that sound stand out amidst a sea of other cocoas, which tend to be more on the brownish side of the spectrum. It delivers a very rich chocolate flavor and, although it looks red coming out of the can, doesn’t really contribute any red coloring to baked goods it is included in.
Cocoa Rouge is dutched cocoa powder. While regular cocoa powder is acidic, dutched cocoa powder has been alkalized to make it neutral (pH 7.0) or slightly alkaline. Technical terms aside, this means that dutched cocoa powder does not react to leavening agents like baking soda in the same way that non-alkalized cocoa powders do. Most recipes will not be effected if you substitute one for the other, but there is a chance that the finished product might not get quite the same rise with dutched as with regular cocoa.
The advantage to using dutched cocoa is that it can have a deeper flavor – as well as a deeper color, like the Cocoa Rouge. Dutching seems to cut some of the sharpness of plain cocoa powder, so the finished product should have a slightly mellower feel, and potentially a richer flavor. This is definitely the case with this cocoa powder and it’s a great dutched powder to have on hand in the kitchen. I’ve used it in cookies and cakes (mostly recipes that don’t specify dutched or regular) with great results.