Chocolate Chip Cookies

After a stupendously busy Friday and Saturday, I spent the entirety of Sunday afternoon in bed. With the exception of crawling out to eat some mid-afternoon lunch, I didn’t move for the entire afternoon. It was bliss.

I read for awhile. I scrolled social media. I read some more. And then I got ambitious and organized my blog archives. In so doing, I broke my massive recipe page into 5 separate pages by category. Check it out! Main dishes, desserts and sweets, breakfast, appetizers, and sides and sauces.

When I was sorting the desserts and sweets, I realized I’ve never posted my all-time favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. That changes today. This recipe is so lovely. It works well as written below, and makes 2 dozen cookies. If you want to double it–it will work just as well!

20150118_165046Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes 2 dozen

You’ll need:

  • 6 Tbs. butter, softened (not in the microwave, let it sit on your counter for a couple of hours)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Cream butter and sugars together until it’s smooth and all of the butter lumps are gone (2-3 minutes). Using an electric mixer will work the best.

3. Add one egg and vanilla, beat again.

4. Add flour, salt, and baking soda to the same bowl. Start mixing on low speed, and gradually increase speed until everything is mixed in.

5. Mix in chocolate chips by hand.

6. Drop dough onto an un-sprayed cookie sheet. Bake one sheet at a time for 10-12 minutes.

20150118_090830

Peanut Butter Cookies–Gluten Free and Dairy Free

I have a piano student who has both a gluten and a dairy intolerance. When I mentioned there would be snacks at a studio party I was hosting, this student nonchalantly asked, “They’ll be gluten free and dairy free, right?” Umm……Of course! And so, they were.

20140314_095027This peanut butter cookie recipe is quick to whip up. I won’t promise they taste exactly like traditional peanut butter cookies, but they’re pretty good!

Peanut Butter Cookies (GF/DF)

Recipe based on Gluten Free Girl

You’ll need:

  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp baking powder

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and cover two baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Cream together the peanut butter and the sugar. Add the egg and vanilla and mix in. Add the baking powder, and combine.

3. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.

4. Roll into small balls, an inch in diameter. Much bigger than that, and the cookies won’t hold together. Roll each ball in sugar, and place on parchment covered cookie sheet. Using a small fork, press lightly on the top of the cookie.

20140313_1932055. Bake for 6-7 minutes. Let cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes, and then transfer to a cooling rack. They won’t quite look done coming out of the oven. That’s OK! They continue to bake on the cookie sheet after you take them out the oven.

A note: this dough will be gooier than your average cookie dough (even after refrigerating), due to not having any flour in it. It’s supposed to be like that–follow the directions, and you’re on your way to gluten and dairy free happiness. Happy baking!

20140314_095027

Required Reading

Do you remember being given required reading when you were in school? I do. Sometimes, I hated it because it interrupted whatever else I was reading (which was obviously more fun). Sometimes, I loved it, because, well, I love books.

Here’s some required reading for the foodie in you. The NY Times wrote this really great article. If you ever bake with butter, you need to read it.

It talks about butter, its properties, and its premium temperatures for various baking needs. So, I did a little experiment. A couple of weeks ago, I baked these:

Check out how pillowy, and soft, and adorable they look.

Well, I tried another batch this past weekend, only this time I was in a hurry. Because I was in a hurry, I didn’t have time to let the butter soften on it’s own. I committed the most heinous offense, and put the butter in the microwave for 10 seconds. And you know what? It made a difference!

Not as soft. Not as pillowy. Mostly, just not as adorable.

According to the article, butter is best when it’s 65 degrees: still cold, but spreadable. Once it hits 68, it starts to melt, and then it’s no going back. See…..(please disregard the awful lighting in the picture to the right).

(please disregard the awful lighting in the picture to the right 🙂 )

So, let this be a lesson to you. It’s worth it. Don’t microwave your butter.