Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies & a mini-makeover

Like the show Dinner and a Movie-- my friend Julie came over and we went back and forth from baking cookies to getting her dolled up, and chatted about life in between scenes. So fun! 
(We also had tea and crumpets - just about my favorite thing ever. Especially while sitting in the "Eat, Pray, Love corner" of my kitchen; a sweet little alcove with iron & mosaic chairs, a robin's egg tablecloth over a round table with a bamboo plant and my teapot collection, and surrounded by memorabilia from friends and travels. Thanks to Vina for naming it!)

I've been making chocolate chip cookies using this recipe since I was twelve. Crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside, with a good texture that can withstand a hearty milk dunking! 
In recent years, I have made one change: the switch from chips to chunks. I love the dichotomy between the chocolate and the cookie and using chunks helps to highlight the separation - i.e. more chocolatey goodness concentrated into little pools in each bite of cookie! Especially wonderful warm out of the oven...

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1. Into a mixing bowl: 2 sticks of good butter, 2 extra large eggs, 2 tsp good vanilla extract, 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tsp baking soda, 1 cup white sugar, 1 packed cup dark brown sugar. Blend on low until mixed, then on medium for a minute or two until light and creamy. Don't blend so much that you lose the sugar granules though! I've found that makes for flat lifeless cookies.
2. Add 3 cups of unbleached all-purpose flour and mix until thoroughly combined. Fold in one 12 oz. bags of semi-sweet or dark chocolate chunks. (Milk chocolate makes the cookies overwhelmingly sweet). 
3. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. 

This makes about 21 palm-sized cookies for me. Let them cool in a non-drafty place so they don't flatten, and cool thoroughly before storing in an airtight container.

(yes that's an alligator in the bamboo/pathos jungle - his name is Charlemagne.)

*Of note - I try not to use plastic for anything except the occasional silicone spatula. I mix, cook, and store everything in stainless steel, glass, or porcelain as much as is possible.

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