Sunday, April 14, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookies

NEWSFLASH! The previously posted recipe for Sweet and Salty Cake contained an omission in the ingredient list. It has been corrected, and I apologize for any inconvenience or resultant reduction of delectability. 

I had a discussion with my sister-in-law the other day about how baked goods look vs. how they taste. She felt like deliciousness is the measure of a baked good and appearance was unimportant. I agree that deliciousness trumps any other factor. But, in my mind anyway, I feel like if you put effort into executing all the steps correctly, it should look good in the end. Pretty, even.

But maybe I'm wrong.

Because I followed the instructions on these cookies to the letter. But they have that saggy-old-lady-skin look to the edges. Why?

I've done a little research, and most of what I found suggests one of two things:

1) Instead of using butter, use half butter half Crisco. To which I say, "Thanks for that; I'll file that away..."* Since deliciousness trumps appearance, that is not a viable option.

2) Chilling the dough before baking. To which I say, "But I did! The recipe told me to!"

After baking the initial batch, I even froze the rest of the dough in little balls and baked some a few days later. Still old lady skin cookies.

And, truth be told, the pictures of these cookies in the cookbook don't look super great, either. Not so wrinkly, but not the picture-perfect cookies I imagine.

So, next time, I will take some other advice I found, which is to reduce the baking soda. We'll see how that turns out.

In the meantime, the cookies were delicious. A great balance of cookie and chocolate chips. They will be my new go-to chocolate chip cookie, replacing the recipe I used to use, which was entitled "Best Cookies."


Chocolate Chip Cookies a.k.a. New Best Cookies (printable recipe)

Recipe courtesy of Baked: New Frontiers in Baking by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. Copied with permission.
  • 2 1/4 c flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter, soft but cool
  • 1 c firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 2/3 c (16 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips
Cooking Directions
  1. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, salt, and baking soda together and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars together until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. The mixture will look light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and beat for 5 seconds.
  3. Add half the flour mixture and mix for 15 seconds. Add the remaining flour mixture and beat until just incorporated. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Cover the bowl tightly and refrigerator for 6 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. Use an ice cream scoop to scoop out dough in 2-tablespoon-size balls. Use your hands to shape the dough into perfect balls and place them 1 inch apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 12-14 minutes, rotating the pans once during the cooking time, until the edges of the cookies are golden brown and the tops just start to darken.
  7. Remove the pan from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Use a spatula to transfer the individual cookies to the rack to cool completely.
* Does anybody know where that quote came from? I have listened to the movie playing in my car probably 100 times. Still funny.


  1. Yum! Old lady skin...ha ha. Perfect description. I'll have to try it- I have a killer recipe too that love that uses half Crisco/half butter. Also half white/half brown sugar. Not sure about the movie? Was it Emperors New Groove? We were following you one day on the way to school and Josh noticed that movie was playing in your car. And he got jealous.

  2. I want to marry you.

  3. I can attest to the shortening rule. I wanted to bake cookies the other day, but was out of butter. I have a book called Ratio that gives you basic recipe ratios and then encourages you to create your own recipes. The book says if you use lots of flavoring, you can use shortening, but orange and vanilla bean couldn't choke out the shortening taste.