Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookies (A secret family recipe)

I am famous for my chocolate chip cookies. It is, of course, a secret family recipe–NOT. They are just Toll House Cookies, and the recipe is on the back of Nestle’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels. However, people tell me mine are the best they’ve ever had (really?), so here is the recipe with what few distinctions I have to offer.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) Land O’Lakes margarine
3/4 cup brown sugar (Dixie Crystals or Dominos)
3/4 cup white sugar (Dominos)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract (not flavoring, real vanilla)
2 1/4 cup all purpose flour (Gold Medal or Pillsbury)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
12 oz. Nestle’s chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream margarine and sugars until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and mix until smooth.
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Add to margarine/egg mixture.
Mix in chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoon on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 11-12 minutes until center is done but still light.
Remove and eat. They’re best when they’re warm.


Now for my modifications. Don’t be put off; none of these things add any time. It seriously takes me about an hour to make a whole batch of cookies (3 1/2 dozen):

1. Set out your margarine and eggs for about 1/2 an hour so they’re not cold when you mix them.

2. I only use Land O’Lakes margarine. I’ll drive to a different store to get it if I have to. Yes, I know that butter is healthier, but it is an entirely different taste. Butter gives a very clean taste; margarine gives a warm taste. Has to be Land O’Lakes though. Other margarines aren’t creamy enough.

3. For sugars and flour, I always use name brands. The store brands cook differently. I don’t know why.

4. I learned from the Mrs. Field’s Cookbook to whisk the dry ingredients with a wire whisk instead of a fork or spoon. It’s a substitute for sifting, which I would never do for cookies, but it makes a better product.

5. I don’t measure the vanilla. The recipe calls for a teaspoon, but I just eyeball it. Gives it a little extra flavor, I think. And make sure it’s real vanilla, not vanilla flavoring.

6. Don’t over mix. The dough should be a little lumpy, not pulverized.

7. I only use Nestle chocolate chips, never Hershey or store brand, and I never measure. I eyeball that too, putting in a bit more than they suggest.

**8. Raw cookie dough is delicious. My boys have eaten it all their lives, and they’ve never gotten sick. My oldest is 29, and he still comes down for a spoonful of dough when he smells cookies.

9. Let the pans cool before you put on more dough; if you don’t, the bottoms of the cookies begin to cook before you even put them in the oven. I usually have 3 or 4 pans going at a time, so I can have some in the oven while the others cool.

10. It usually takes longer than 11 minutes, but when the timer goes off, it reminds me to watch carefully. I reset the timer by increments of one minute. The outer edge should be crisp but the inside soft.

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