Chocolate chip cookie preferences are about as personal as what kind of socks or pajamas you like to wear. The cookies can be chewy, crisp, crunchy, tender, soft, thick, thin, full of chips, moderately chip-full, with nuts, no nuts, etc. Oddly, we’ve never had a chocolate chip recipe in this column before. Of course, no one ever asked either. Chocolate chip cookies are probably the most commonly made ones in the whole country, so maybe no one needs a recipe.
Nonetheless, here comes one because I really like this recipe. It is the one that the late Anne Owsley, one of the truly grande dames of Islesboro’s summer colony, always used. Her children and grandchildren made sure these cookies were served at the reception following her memorial service. When I tasted them I found The Chocolate Cookie for Me. They suit me perfectly. The ratio of butter to brown sugar and sugar and flour is what makes the difference as far as soft and chewy versus crisp is concerned and this one has a lot of butter and sugar which makes a soft caramel-flavored cookie to carry the chips.
The other really handy thing about this recipe and probably other chocolate chip recipes, too, is that you can merely switch the kind of chips you use to end up with a butterscotch chip or a mint chocolate chip or a peanut butter chip cookie. Plus, of course, you have your choice of semi-sweet or milk chocolate. Personally, I am a semi-sweet sort of person. Actually come to think if it, that doesn’t apply just to chocolate.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes about 40 cookies
2½ cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (two sticks) butter
¾ cup sugar
¾ cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
12 ounces chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a baking sheet. Sift together the flour, salt and baking soda. Cream together the butter, sugar and brown sugar then beat in the vanilla and eggs. Add the dry ingredients and then fold in the chips and optional nuts. Drop by tablespoonfuls on the baking sheet allowing for spreading. Bake for nine to 11 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool.
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