Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookies: Sometimes Traditional is Beautiful

I'm all for experimentation in art, jazz, love, and life, but sometimes plain old vanilla ice cream, chocolate chip cookies or a simple shot of amaretto are flavors I crave. I don't think one has to always muddle lime basil in her salsa or make goji berry-flaxseed-chocolate chip cookies to make traditional fare taste great, though I will admit little fusion tips and tricks like these amuse me.

Sometimes, though, it's easy to understand why some tried-and-true recipes are just that: unflappable, honest, and incredibly comforting. Great bakers know that you don't have to be exotic to create delicious food. There's something beautiful about the simplicity of high-quality ingredients.

So, in tonight's post, I want to pay respect to the unfussy Chocolate Chip Cookie. You are simple, you are humble, but oh-so good when you come straight from the oven. And now that fall is settling in, let's fire up the ovens and bake.

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies
by Mark Bittman, How to Cook Everything
Makes 3 to 4 dozen

Time: About 30 minutes

1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract (pure... no imitation, folks)
2 cups premium chocolate chips (I like Ghiradelli)

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Use an electric mixer to cream together the butter and sugars; add the eggs one at a time (this is key!) and beat until well blended (smooth, baby, smooth!).
3. Combine the dry ingredients--flour, baking soda, and salt--in a bowl and add them to the batter by hand, stirring to blend. Stir in the vanilla & then the chocolate chips.
4. Drop by teaspoons or tablespoons onto ungreased baking sheets and bake until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Cool for about 2 minutes on the sheets before using a spatula to transfer the cookies to a rack to finish cooling. Store in a covered container at room temp for no more than a day or two.


Anonymous said...

agreed agreed agreed agreed! and YUM.

Jenna said...

....and this is when Ed says "You never make me chocolate chip cookies!"


Kella said...

Well, Jenna, if it makes you feel any better, I made these cookies when I first started writing this blog (which was in March of this year). So technically, Dave isn't getting cookies this week either.