I hate making salads. I order them at restaurants because I don’t like making them at home myself. I’m a lazy salad-maker. I hate all the veggie chopping and dressing mixing and lettuce washing.
Cooking, I enjoy. Baking, I love. I make a mean hot fudge pie, dark chocolate mousse I would bathe in (thank you, Bread and Wine), delicious chocolate cobbler, and pretty darn awesome chocolate chip cookies–if I do say so myself. Notice something? It’s not dessert to me unless it’s chocolate. Dark chocolate.
Pascha found a frozen roll of my cookie dough in the recesses of her freezer last night. She held it out to me like a kitten in cupped hands. Eyes wide, she said it was “like gold.” My brother, Chad, is working as a chaplain at Yellowstone National Park. I think he washes dishes and works the restaurant cash register or something during the week, but gets to preach on a deck overlooking Old Faithful on the weekends.
He won’t settle down, marry and get a “real job” like the rest of us normal people. Instead he does cool things like guides Holy Land tours in Israel, teaches Bible courses at a camp in California , and road bikes in the Sequoyah National Forest. Boring. 😉
Mom said Chad has lost 10 pounds this summer because they don’t feed him much at Yellowstone. So this morning I baked him my famous Fluffy Chocolate Chip cookies, packaged them between wax paper and sent them off to Wyoming. Love you, Chad.
I’m going to share my thoughts about the perfect cookie.
First, let’s define what the “perfect cookie” is to me: soft, plump and a little gooey on the inside with a kiss of golden brown crunch on the outside. Fluffy. Not too buttery or sugary or salty. The perfect balance.
If you like crunchy, flat cookies, you will hate these. Sorry.
My Secrets for the Perfect Cookie:
1. Butter matters. It should be set out on the counter for at least three hours so that it’s softened. Don’t even try to soften it in the microwave. That’s called melting. Melted butter makes for flat cookies. Cool, slightly soft butter makes for yummy cookies.
2. Corn starch makes cookies fluffy.
3. Buy good chocolate chips. Ina Garden is one of my favorite Food Network personalities. She says elitist foodie things like “use only good olive oil.” “Cook with good wine.” “Don’t ever use imitation vanilla extract.” But when it comes to chocolate, I agree with her. I buy Ghirardelli dark chocolate chips. Guittard are also fabulous. Dark chocolate contains fiber, minerals, antioxidants, lowers blood pressure and risk of heart disease and stimulates brain activity. Yes, please. If you don’t like dark chocolate, try mixing dark with milk or white chocolate to make it sweeter.
4. Roll your dough into balls before baking. This makes them puffier.
5. Use an Air Bake pan. I see (and taste) a noticeable difference when I use an AirBake pan vs. a roasting or regular pizza/cookie pan. And eww…I don’t like the taste of baking stones.
6. Put the dough in the fridge for about 5 minutes before baking.
7. Bake at 350 degrees for no longer than 10 min. (using my recipe below)
Recipe adapted from one I found on Pinterest. But I only use one stick of butter…can’t justify pulling TWO from the fridge. Sorry. I bake for 9 minutes exactly. Not 8. Not 10.
Yum. Freeze into a log for later or share with friends. You’re welcome.