There is nothing better than warm chocolate chip cookies and the original Toll House Cookie recipe is the very best!
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Happy New Year and welcome to 2018! One of my goals this year is to interact more with you guys, especially in my Facebook group. Because one of my favorite things about blogging is getting to connect with people like you and put our heads together to find ways to make cooking a joyful and delicious experience. That’s why I started the group to begin with, not to mention this site!
Since I also want to be more creative, I’ve decided to put out a monthly cooking challenge for you guys and members of my Facebook group to give us a chance to really get creative and have some fun with classic recipes.
How does this cooking challenge work?
- Start by joining my Facebook group Family Meals Made Easy.
- At the beginning of each month, I will post a base recipe of a classic dish. Sometimes it will be baking (like this month!) and sometimes it will be cooking.
- During the month of January you can take this base recipe and add your own twist to it. Change to make it more interesting.
- I will include tips within this post to help take the guess work out of adding your own twist and then it’s up to you to get those creative juices flowing.
- Snap a photo of your recipe variation and post it in the Facebook group. Tell us what you changed and if you learned something from making the variation, share that as well. Even if the variation doesn’t turn out as you expected, share it with us and share your thoughts- it’s a great opportunity for everyone all to learn!
But wait, there’s more: the giveaway!
At the end of the month, there will be a giveaway and one lucky winner will get:
- 1 Silpat Perfect Cookie Baking Mat
- 1 Cookie Scoop
- 1 Cooling Rack
Here’s how to enter:
- When you post your image of your recipe variation in the group, use the hashtag #TLJJanuaryCookingChallenge so I can find your post- you have to use the hashtag for it to be considered a giveaway entry.
- You can also get giveaway entries if you share a link to this post about the challenge on your personal Facebook page, Twitter or on Instagram so your friends can get in on the fun, but don’t forget to use the hashtag so that I can make sure each of those entries are included.
For the inaugural cooking challenge, I went with Nestle’s Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. As far as I’m concerned, this is the benchmark for a perfect chocolate chip cookie. Just the right dough to chocolate chip ratio. A bit crispy on the edges and soft in the middle. And the right size to dunk into a glass of milk!
I also love that this recipe leaves room for variations. Since this is baking and baking is chemistry, you want to be careful about what you choose to change. So I put together some tips to help you add your own delicious twist to these fantastic cookies!
Tips for altering Chocolate Chip Cookies:
- Respect the ratios– while I’m no baking expert, I’ve come to understand that baking is all about ratios. Major alterations the the basic ratio can majorly affect the overall cookie. With this in mind, I encourage you to think about what items you’re changing out and try to change them out with similar items. For example, if I was changing the flavoring to be different from the one teaspoon of vanilla that’s in the original recipe, I would swap it out for the same amount of a different flavor extract like almond or orange or in general, something in liquid form. That way the amount of liquid remains the same (or close to the same) but you’re still getting a different flavor. Try to sub liquids for other liquids and solids for other solids.
- Keep in mind the size of your solid add-in’s– It’s fun to add different things like candy, nuts, dried fruit. The possibilities are endless! Make you that you keep in mind the size of the add-in item with relation to the size of your cookies and change them as needed. So if I was adding pecans into the recipe, I wouldn’t add whole pecans as they would be much too large. I would chop them instead. Or if I wanted to add raisins, I would keep them the same size as they’re already similar in size to the chocolate chips, but I would substitute one of the cups of chocolate chips with the raisins so that the ratios remain the same.
- Have fun, be creative and don’t stress if they don’t turn out perfect- There are so many different things you can change- don’t limit yourself. There are add-in’s like dried fruit, nuts, candies. Flavorings like different extracts. Even different spices (chocolate and spices often go together beautifully!). This is all about experimenting and even if they don’t come out perfect, please still share them and tell us what you learned. The idea is for all of us to learn from each other and we often learn the most when we mess up (I know I do!).
Here are some helpful tools for making great Chocolate Chip Cookies:
10 minPrep Time
11 minCook Time
21 minTotal Time
Yields Around 5 dozen cookies
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 sticks butter, softened (1 cup)
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups chocolate chips
- 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and line baking pans with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
- Mix flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract until well combined.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing in between each egg.
- Gradually add the dry ingredients until just combined.
- Stir in the chocolate chips and nuts (if you're adding them).
- Arrange rounded Tablespoons of dough two inches apart on the lined pans.
- Bake 9-11 minutes or until golden.
- After couple minutes out of the oven, transfer to cooling racks.
You can also do these as bars in a 15 x 10 inch jelly roll pan- grease the pan and spread the dough into an even layer in the pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Makes 4 dozen bars.
Now go forth and bake!
I also love this cookie recipe:
Another tasty cookie recipe is this one:
You can find a full index of my recipes here.
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