Monday, July 2, 2012

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

My baby brother, Cal, lives in Kansas.  They are enjoying temperatures in the +100s.  I am so very jealous.  We grew up in Kansas and once you get used to a summer that is warm (yes, over 100 is warm) you never get over it.  Living in Fairbanks now, the summers are a tad bit cooler.  I could see my breath this morning when I went out to jog. (Yes, June 27 and I could see my breath).  It is kinda crappy.

Last night was so cold, I had to bake just to warm the house up.  I made the perfect chocolate chip cookies.  The recipe came from a new cookbook called Cookies.  No, I don't own enough cookbooks.  The secret ingredient is oatmeal flour.  You make it by grinding old fashioned oatmeal in your food processor (I have a coffee grinder I use just for bread crumbs, flax seeds, herbs and spices and now, oat flour).  These cookies are chewy, nutty and delicious.  The perfect thing to take on a picnic or eat in a hot bath when it is so cold that is the only way you can warm up.  And that is what I did.

The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie
adapted from Cookies, Leisure Arts
1 cup butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups old fashioned oats
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans

In a large bowl, cream butter, sugars, eggs and vanilla until fluffy.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt.  Add to creamed mixture, mixing thoroughly.

Place oats in a blender or food processor and process until the texture of coarse meal.  Stir oats into dough with chocolate chips and pecans.  Scoop into balls with medium scoop (#40).  Freeze for at least 30 minutes.

Pre heat oven to 375ºF.

Take out number of cookie balls you want to bake.  Place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  Let sit on counter while oven pre-heats.  Bake cookies for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges.  Cool cookies slightly on baking sheets; transfer to wire racks to cool.

Place any unbaked cookie balls in a freezer plastic bag for future use.  To bake, place frozen balls on lined cookie sheet and let sit on counter while the oven pre-heats.

Yields: about 5 dozen cookies

Make sure you cream your butter and sugar well.  The mixture should be lighter in color than when you started mixing and should be light and creamy.

Mix your dry ingredients until well incorporated but no more.  Over mixing the cookie dough changes the texture and the enjoyment of eating your cookies.

I mix my dough, scoop with a #40 scooper all at once and freeze on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Then I bake a dozen or so at a time (just put on cookie sheet and let sit for 15 minutes before baking).  If I want to bake all of them that day, I mix, scoop, refrigerate for at least 30 minutes then bake.

July 2, 2012     Daylight  21 hours,  18 minutes     Current Temp. 62ºF

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