chocolate chip cookies

 

Ok. Chocolate chip cookies. Who doesn’t like warm, gooey, cookies? I’m looking forward to this bake because

  1. cookies
  2. these are way less time intensive than cinnamon rolls and chicken pot pies
  3. it should also be the easiest baked good I’ve attempted to date
  4. cookies

I got this.

1 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
12 oz chocolate chips

Cream shortening, eggs, and sugar. Add remaining ingredients, with
the chocolate chips last. Drop on ungreased sheets and bake at 375° 
for approximately 12 minutes. Yields 4 dozen.

nadia1

What my cookies should look like.

I’m optimistic this bake will go without any serious muck-ups. I mean, it’s cookies and there are nine total ingredients. Though, when I’m confident, I also tend to become headstrong and am much more liable to fuck this up somehow, likely due to modifying the recipe, recklessness, or both. Maybe one day I’ll remember cooking is not baking and, “Oh, that looks like enough of ingredient x” just isn’t nearly as forgiving. More than likely, though,

aragorn

Another initial thought of slight concern is that both Nadia and her mother, Bonnie, are incredible bakers and this recipe is one of Bonnie’s she’s crafted and honed over roughly 30 years. Nadia’s only been eating them, and now baking them, all her life. So you know, no pressure, Jay.

I am relieved to read so few ingredients and directions. But…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

What the actual fuck do I do with 48 cookies who’s edibility may or may not easily be called into question? One lesson I have learned is that you can’t just half all of a baking recipe’s ingredients and expect a perfect half yield.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

On this note, onward to victory and 48 cookies!


the bake

Cream shortening, eggs, and sugar.

So, I don’t fully know what “cream” means when used as a verb, but I’m going to assume it’s synonymous with “whip the shit out of this stuff,” which I do know how to do. In a recent chat with my amazing aunt, Alisa (who in her own right is a great baker, taught by our [great] grandmother, Frieda), she mentioned one of the best secrets for baked confections, “whip the butter then add the sugar; it’ll more evenly disperse the sugar.” Seems like advice that’s pertinent here.

What do I do? Immediately dump the sugar on top of the shortening. Idiot.

Regardless of mistake number one, this certainly looks like fat and sugar “creamed.” Cool. creamed

In my zeal, I almost make mistake number two and completely forgot to add the brown sugar. Reading over the recipe before advancing I’m lucky and happen to catch this, much to my own relief.

Next, I mix in the salt and baking soda. Mistake number two was only staved off for about five minutes and manifests itself in the form of vanilla extract. I misjudge the amount hidden in the tiny bottle and much more vanilla than anticipated comes rushing out, quickly filling my teaspoon and spilling into the mixture. This is met with wide eyes, a quick, “OH MY GOD,” and hesitation of what to do next.

vanilla

I hope you like some vanilla flavor.

I don’t think an obscene amount spilled into the mixture? I guess we’ll soon find out. I give these ingredients a quick blend before adding the flour.

 

Two cups of flour seem incredibly shitty to mix all at once. To spare my forearm, I’ve decided to mix one cup at a time and it seems to have made a positive difference. Working the dough together wasn’t too difficult.

Unfortunately, mistake number three is realized now. And it’s grave. I forgot to a) pose this bake’s drink with the initial ingredient photograph and b) start drinking 😐

cider

[obligatory drink pic]

Today’s drink is brought to you by forgetting to buy a beer intentionally for this bake and this cider being the only alcoholic, non-liquor, drink on hand. So, thanks, Flatbed Cider, I guess. I don’t even like it but I feel to harness my true creative strength in all things baking and writing, drinks are in order.

I muscle down this cider and start to wrap up the second cup of flour, yielding my final dough mixture. I show Nadia the progress thus far. Her response?

nadia reaction

“It’s a little wet.”

WTF. I FOLLOWED THE RECIPE EXAC… oh, the vanilla extract? 😐

WHATEVER.

I mix in my chocolate chips and start to ball out the dough. Baking cookies in the past has always seen me bork this part. I always underestimate cookie crawl while baking and they smush together. I’m going to at least try to avoid this pitfall today by using a larger pan and creating smaller balls of dough.

… And, of course, I still make them too big. These things happen.

[28 minutes elapse]

But hey, these genuinely look like cookies and are a far cry from the original Cakies. YES!


lessons learned

  1. Don’t pour liquids over your batter/dough
  2. Cookies need space to grow when baking
  3. Without enough space, they squish into each other and your baking time gets messy, along with their texture
  4. Follow baking recipes more exactly than the last for optimal results

final


cakies earned

Appearance: 7/10 Cakies- “They’re a little too big and a little too dark in color. They’re almost face-sized”

Appeal: 9/10 Cakies- “Smelled really good, they’re soft. I don’t really like crunchy cookies.”

Taste: 8/10 Cakies- “Pretty dang good. A little lack of flavor, but I can’t figure out why. Maybe you need a secret ingredient.” (aside from love? 😦 )

Overall: 8/10 Cakies- “They’re a touch big and something’s not quite the same [as mine], but I want to eat them all anyway.”

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best part: “You didn’t overbake them.”

Worst part: “That ‘lack of flavor’ that I can’t pinpoint.”


final thoughts

Heyo! Super pleased with this effort. No major failures and following the recipe to the letter really seem to be the key here. Even better, I only ended up with 20 cookies and not 48. Huh.

With one and a half successful bakes in the past two weeks, how do people feel about ciabatta? [note, with Nadia being out of town for a week beginning this coming weekend, it’ll be two weeks until the next bake is enjoyed tentatively consumed.]

 

final1

😀

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s