Cookies are made of butter and love! And for me just add lots of chocolate chips and they become scrumptious. Cookies always remind me of my childhood days. Those days we used to call them biscuits as is commonly said in India. Me and my brother could just have a feast on them. Till very recently my breakfast comprised of only tea and cookies. I still remember how the store bought biscuits were taken for granted and then there were the other kinds which looked special and the bakery man would come to our doorstep selling them. The place where I spent my entire childhood was a small town where you will have milk-man, fruit-sellers, fishmongers and the bakery man (we would call him ‘bread-wala’) coming to your doorstep. Those were the golden days! The bakery biscuits would be treated with lot of dignity and distributed not so generously with friends. 🙂 It seems I had a soft corner for them (as with anything sweet) since then.
Lately I discovered my passion for baking and that I can be really good at it. So this was my first attempt at baking cookies. Personally I do not use store bought ready to bake mixtures for cakes or cookies. I either buy the final product or make it from scratch by myself.
As usual there was lot of research as to the best and simplest method and well I discovered that there was no one way of doing it. Baking is like life, you don’t always have to follow the recipe just like you don’t always have to follow the crowd! Having said that one definitely needs somewhere to start off with. So my recipe is like a summary of all the recipes that I liked and that suited me. The result was no doubt very satisfying and needless to say I got a nice kick with the distinctive aroma of baking.
The first day I was so excited with my cookies that I forgot to click a pic of the cookie dough, which I had planned to put up so that one knows what to expect. Though I had quite a lot left after my first day of baking it just slipped out of my mind. The next day I baked almost all of it when I realised I needed to click for my blog. So whatever little was left is shown in the snap and I do hope it gives you the idea of how the batter is supposed to look. By the way I gave into the temptation of tasting the cookie dough and it was delicious. I am sure there might be many like me who did this which makes me confess that I ate up quite a lot of that dough while it was chilling in the refrigerator.
I also clicked one as I put the last three on my tray. As I explore this new found joy of baking I also found lot of tips and tricks that helped me, so I have mentioned a few at the end.
- Unsalted butter (at room temperature) – 1 cup / 2 sticks / 226 gms
- White Sugar – 3/4 cup
- Brown Sugar – 3/4 cup tightly packed
- Vanilla – 1 1/2
- Egg – 2
- Flour – 2 1/4 cups
- Baking soda – 1 tsp; if using baking powder use 4 times the amount of soda so 4 tsp
- Salt – 1/2 tsp
- Chocolate chips, semisweet – 1 cup or as desired.
- In a mixing bowl beat the butter (which is at room temperature) until it is smooth and creamy.
- Add white sugar and brown sugar and beat it with the butter. Halfway through add the vanilla extract and beat it until everything is well incorporated.
- Next add the eggs one at a time and again blend it with the mixture.
- In a separate bowl add flour, baking soda and salt and mix well.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter sugar and egg mixture and mix it well.
- Gradually add the chocolate chips and keep mixing till everything is uniformly blended. The cookie dough is ready
- At this stage seal it properly with a plastic wrap and let it chill in the refrigerator for either couple of hours or even couple of days.
- When baking preheat the oven to 375 F and line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Either use an ice-cream scoop or a spoon to scoop out the dough onto the lined baking sheet. The dough balls should neither be too small not too big. Mine were lime sized balls and were uniform in shape. They should be adequately and uniformly spaced. The tray that I used could bake only 6 cookies at a time.
- Bake them for 9-11 minutes at 375 F. Temperature and timings might vary slightly but do not overcook them.
- Take out the cookies and transfer them to a cooling rack. Let them cool down completely.
A few things worth mentioning when it comes to baking cookies:
- Though the recipe called for baking soda which was lacking in my pantry I used baking powder (4 times the amount of baking soda mentioned) and it turned out to be pretty fine. I still need to use baking soda and try this out again; will surely put in my comments.
- Freshly prepared cookie dough can be baked right away but the results turn out best if the dough is chilled in the refrigerator for a couple of hours to a day or two. I made them in two batches – first was after chilling the dough for 2-3 hours and the result was good enough. The second batch was made the next day and it was definitely much better than the first batch. So if possible chill it overnight for better results.
- The baking time might vary from oven to oven, however always remember that Cookies, when taken out of the oven, might have the center soft and slightly gooey. Allow them to rest and cool on a cooling rack completely before attacking them. They continue to cook on the sheet so underdone is better than over done. Having said that, do not resist to try one straight out from the oven. After cooling them for a while if you still feel the need to, you can bake them again for 5 mins or so.
- I have used a 50-50 proportion of white and brown sugar, however if required the proportion can be adjusted to 60-40 or likewise. More brown sugar will give it a more brown color.
- Butter needs to be at room temperature. Period!
- It is best to use a hand blender to mix the ingredients, but since I did possess one, I mixed it with a wooden ladle. I needed to put in more time and effort to mix it than a blender but it is definitely doable.
- Place the dough balls well spaced on the baking tray so that when the cookies spread while baking they do not overlap.
- Once they are completely cooled down store the cookies in an air tight container.