I may not be able to bake bread like Annie’s Grannie, but I can make a mean chocolate chip cookie…and so can you. Here’s the recipe I used for the last batch I made, which were so good (and easy) I wanted to share. Some people might think baking cookies is more difficult than it is. It’s really easy, it’s really inexpensive, and the lucky folks who get to eat them will think you’re the greatest. Depending on which ingredients you use, this batch of cookies will cost anywhere from $2.50 to $6.00. You’ll get about 5-6 dozen, depending on size. Where can you buy a dozen homemade preservative free cookies for $1 a dozen?
Here are a few tips for baking a great cookie:
- Make sure your butter and eggs are at room temperature. The butter is easier to cream and the eggs will incorporate better
- If you don’t want super sweet cookies, you can reduce the recommended amount of chocolate chips by as much as half
- If you don’t want nuts, you don’t have to add them
- You can use all margarine, a margarine/butter mix or all butter
It’s imperative that the cookie batter chills before you bake the cookies, otherwise they flatten out too much and are more hard and crunchy, as opposed to soft and chewy
You can form dough into logs by dropping large spoonfuls of dough along a length of plastic wrap and then folding plastic to make a tube – kind of like you see the cookie dough in the refrigerated section of your local grocery store. (I wish I had pretty step-by-step pictures like The Pioneer Woman). Once the dough chills, you can cut sections of the log and place sections on a cookie sheet to bake. I usually cut a section and then cut that section in half. This step is not necessary. You can leave it in a bowl with a lid and use a spoon to scoop out the dough.
You can also use an ice cream scoop to scoop dough from the bowl to make uniform cookies – I don’t own one, so I make the logs.
- Baking cookies at a low temperature insures a chewy cookie
- Remove cookies from oven when they start to brown on the edge
The dough can be frozen and baked later. Just remove from freezer, place on cookie sheet and bake at about 325 for approximately 10 minutes. What I have done in the past is lined a cookie sheet with waxed paper, spread an even layer of dough in the pan, covered with another sheet of waxed paper and stuck it in the freezer. Before it froze solid, I removed the pan from the freezer and cut dough into separate individual pieces. I laid the individual pieces of dough on a sheet of waxed paper making sure the sides of the dough didn’t touch, covered with another piece of waxed paper, repeat, repeat, repeat and put into a Ziplock bag.
If your cookies are harder than you like, reduce the cooking temp by a few degrees.
To save at clean-up time, you can sift the flour (after measuring) directly into egg/sugar mixture, but make sure you mix the salt and soda with the flour so you don’t have spots with too much salt.
- Salt can be reduced if you like
- Can be mixed by hand, but it’s easier with a mixer
CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
1 cup butter softened (2 sticks)
3/4 cup granulated sugar (regular white sugar)
3/4 cup brown sugar (packed firmly in measuring cup)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups chocolate chips (12 ounces- any brand)
1 cup chopped nuts
Cream butter until softened. Gradually add both sugars and vanilla (break up the brown sugar to help avoid lumps), beat until well incorporated. Add eggs one at a time, beat until well incorporated.
In separate bowl, sift flour (after measuring), salt and baking soda together. Slowly add to egg/sugar mixture. Once flour is incorporated, fold in chocolate chips and nuts. Refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Bake at 325 for about 10-15 minutes on a lightly buttered cookie sheet. Remove from oven when edges of cookies start to brown. Leave cookie on baking sheet for about 5 minutes, then remove to wire cooking rack to finish cooling. Enjoy.
Happy Gardening Cooking