Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Comfort Food Fest- Chocolate Chip Cookies

There is nothing more comforting than a warm, chewy, chocolately chocolate chip cookie.  Whether you like them crispy or chewy (my preference) nothing beats the original -- Toll House Cookies.  For Christmas my husband bought me New England Home Cooking by Brooke Doiny and inside is the story of the Toll House Cookie.

The Legend of Toll House
Ruth Wakefield, owner of the Toll House Inn in Whittman Massachusetts was mixing up a batch of plain American brown sugar cookies known as Bostons or butter drop do cookies.  The legend goes that she ran out of nuts and decided to break up a Nestle semisweet chocolate bar. From this was born the classic was born!  Today Nestle makes more than 240 million morsels everyday.  Chocolate chip cookies are America's most popular cookie recipe, accounting for half of all the cookie baked in the country.

With a few tips you can easily have a warm batch ready in less than an hour. And if you're looking for more chocolate chip cookie variations read all the way to the bottom for the list of recipes from my fellow Comfort Food Fest bloggers.

To make Toll House Cookies you'll need:

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks of butter (I prefer margarine)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
2 cups Nestle semisweet morsels

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small mixing bowl mix together flour, baking soda and salt.  In the bowl of a stand mixer (or using a hand mixer) cream margarine or butter and sugars together. 

<TIP> I like to warm the margarine a little in the microwave. If the margarine is warm it will dissolve the sugars more completely so that the cookies are grainy. I also think that butter will make a crispier cookie and margarine makes one that is more chewy.

Once the butter or margarine and sugars are creamed together then add the vanilla and the eggs.  Once it is completely incorporated (be sure to scrape the sides down) the add the dry ingredients mixing completely.
Add the chocolate chips. 

<TIP>  I like to incorporate the chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon.

<TIP> To bake you can line the cookie sheet with silpat or with parchment to make clean up easier.

Drop the cookies onto the prepared cookie sheet by using a spoon or cookie scoop and bake for 9-11 minutes.  For a chewy cookie let them cool on the pan. For a crispier cookie cool them on rack.

<TIP> Be sure to check the cookies at the 9 minute mark because the cookies will continue to cook after they are taken out of the oven.

With these tips and a tried and true recipe (thanks to Ruth Wakefield and Nestle) you can have fresh baked cookies warm from the oven almost anytime!

More variations on the theme from some amazing bloggers and cooks. Be sure to tell them you found their amazing recipe here!


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