Friday, December 17, 2010

The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie

All over the internet this month you will find Christmas cookie and candy recipes. Everyone is gushing about the traditional sweets that have been made in their families for years, and about how they're frantically finishing their Christmas baking.

I'm so not interested in Christmas cookies. Especially those sugar ones that have frosting and sprinkles on them. Or gingersnaps. Or pfeffernusse (I don't even know what the hell that is!). Or anything with candy canes. Those chocolate-less cookies do nothing for me. I'm a simple girl. When I want a cookie, all I want is a perfect chocolate chip cookie.

Oh, relax. I'm not trying to start any big fights here. I realize that "perfect" is absolutely subjective and what's perfect to me could be average to you. Some people like their chocolate chip cookies chewy-soft (me!). This is the kind of cookie my mom has made for years and my gold standard for the ideal cookie texture. But Mom says she prefers Grandma's cookies which are crispy and crumbly. The difference? Grandma uses butter, Mom uses butter-flavored Crisco.

Not wanting any butter-flavored anything added into my body, but also not wanting to forsake that yummy chewiness, I used a mixture of butter and olive oil for my shortening. It worked like a charm. The cookies came out of the oven delicately crispy on the outside, ooey gooey on the inside, rich with the caramel flavor of extra brown sugar, and studded with good quality semi-sweet chocolate chips. In my humble opinion, absolutely perfect.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 stick butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 1/4 cups flour
1 package semi-sweet chocolate chips

Mix all ingredients together one at a time in the order listed. Ideally, but not necessary, you can chill or freeze the dough before baking. Roll into golf-ball size, smoosh down gently, and bake for 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees. Best enjoyed warm and fresh out of the oven.

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