Saturday, February 6, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookies with Four Variations

My recipe for Chocolate Chip cookies..., the only one I've used since 1981.  I haven't even looked at another chocolate chip cookie recipe since then. This recipe makes a straight-up chocolate chip cookie; nothing fancy, just pure goodness. The ingredients are butter, sugar, chocolate, and flour with a leavening agent and some eggs thrown in. No spices. The cookie is not cakey.  It's not crisp. It's slightly crunchy around the edges, slightly chewy in the middle, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious.  Like I said, pure goodness!   This recipe doesn't fool around either.  You start with a pound of butter and end up with about 6 dozen good sized cookies. (They freeze well.  They travel well, too.  My son in college is getting 3 dozen by US Mail for Valentine's Day.  Shhhh.  Don't tell him :)

Pure Goodness Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 lb. salted butter, at room temperature (there is no other salt in the recipe, so don't use unsalted butter)
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 cups light brown sugar
3 eggs
2 T. vanilla extract
6 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
12 oz (about 4 cups) chocolate chips (semi sweet is usual choice, but some people prefer milk chocolate, or a combination)
2 cups chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour, baking soda, and baking powder in a small bowl.  Beat with a whisk to aerate then set aside. In another bowl beat butter with an electric mixer for about 30 seconds, add in white sugar and beat for 2 minutes, then add in brown sugar and beat for 3 additional minutes or until light and fluffy.  Slowly beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Gradually add in flour mixture to creamed egg-butter mixture.  Once the flour has been incorporated stir in 12 oz (about 4 cups) chocolate chips. Scoop about 1 T of dough for each cookie and place onto ungreased or parchment lined cookie sheets.  For a more refined looking cookie, roll the balls and then flatten slightly with the heel of your palm.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 10 - 12 minutes.  I bake mine, in my current oven, for 11 minutes, which means I take them out of the oven when they still look a smidgen-and I mean a smidgen-undercooked.  Cookies firm up on cooling.  Cool on trays for a few minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely. Makes approx. 6 dozen good sized cookies.

Chocolate Raisin Cookies I love chocolate covered raisins, and Chocolate Raisin cookies are one of my all-time favorites.  Omit the nuts, and use 3 cups chocolate chips (semi sweet or milk) and 3 cups raisins. YUM.

Mixed Chip Cookies  My daughter Abby uses 1 cup butterscotch chips, 1 cup white chocolate chips, 1 cup milk chocolate chips, and 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips. In high school, she was famous for her chocolate chip cookies. She rolls the cookies in nice neat balls, flattens them, and then tops them with one of each kind of die for!

M&M Cookies  Mix in 2-3 cups of the chocolate chips, roll dough into balls, flatten a bit, then press 3-5 M&Ms (depending on the size of the ball) into the top of each cookie.  The M&Ms can be color coordinated to the and green M&Ms for Christmas; pink, red and White for Valentine's Day; orange, purple and black for Halloween; pastels for Easter...

Peppermint Chocolate Chip Cookies  For Christmas, of course.  In place of nuts stir in 2 cups coarsely crushed candy canes.  Be sure to bake on parchment covered cookie sheets.

Thanks for stopping by!  What variation is calling out to you?

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