Our dear friend and well-known food prepper, Si, shares how a seemingly simple chocolate chip cookie recipe changed the way she and her family served those around them:“Cooking has always been my favorite hobby. It brings families together in so many ways. I’ve always been a firm believer that the best family memories are made in the kitchen, creating meals that turn into legacies in our lives! Our Tried and True Chocolate Chip Cookies have become a family favorite recipe.
Years ago, my son Stephen and his friend Spencer (sophomores in high school at the time) started delivering cookies to kids on Sunday evenings. Good things came from those Sunday nights of baking, forgetting about their own teenage problems, and reaching out to others. Cookies were packaged on plates, and the boys took them to kids who needed a lift. At first it was a plate or two. Over the weeks it became four, five, and six plates of cookies. This went on for almost two years, every Sunday evening. It was during this process I decided that I needed a chocolate chip cookie recipe that worked every time, a recipe that was quick and easy, with no guessing involved. I was a woman on a mission to develop the perfect cookie, and in the end, after much trial and error, and feeding my family chocolate chip cookies for weeks, the recipe was perfected! The cookies are lightly golden, with a bit of crunch on the outside, soft and gooey on the inside, buttery, chocolatey and a little bit salty.
But the end result was much more than a perfect cookie.
I’ve baked hundreds of batches over the years. We have given them away to people having babies, new neighbors, graduates, teachers, we’ve taken them to funerals, baptisms, fans at ball games, and missionary farewells and homecomings, to name a few. The cookies have literally and figuratively opened doors to so many opportunities to share love. The conversations usually start with cookies and end with families.
Often people will tell me “I made that recipe for my family, and they loved it!” I love hearing this. They are creating a memory of their own through cooking, one that will stay in their family’s hearts and minds. Those memories will be tucked away when a child is away on a mission, across the country at dental school, serving in the military, or in a difficult marriage and living away from everyone they love. At that time, they can reach back into that reserve and know they are loved.”
Tried and True Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes 18 large cookies. Approx. time: 30 minutes
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened*
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 2¾ cups all-purpose flour*
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt (I prefer coarse salt)
- 2 cups or 1 (12-oz. pkg.) chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 375°F. If using convection, preheat to 375 as well.
- For regular oven, place rack in middle of oven. When using a convection oven, you should be able to bake on all racks at one time.
- Cut butter into pieces (about 2 tablespoons each) and place in mixing bowl. I use a Kitchen Aid and power it on 2 (low). After a few seconds, add granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix on low speed until creamy (this takes just a few seconds). Add eggs, beating just until incorporated and smooth. Never turn the beaters on high. Using a spatula, scrape down the sides of the bowl and bottom of the bowl to insure all ingredients are incorporated.
- Dump 2 cups of the flour, soda, salt, and chocolate chips all together into bowl with butter mixture. Add the remaining ¾ cup of flour to the top of this mixture. Slowly mix the dry ingredients and the chocolate chips together. Do not overmix. Turn the dough with a rubber spatula so the bottom of the dough is mixed into the top of the dough. This will insure the flour is mixed in properly and the chips are distributed evenly.
- Using a cookie scoop, drop onto ungreased baking sheets, or baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Place 6 scoops of dough on each baking sheet. Flatten slightly with the palm of your hand.
- If using convection, bake for 7–10 minutes until golden brown. If using regular oven, bake at 375 for 10–12 minutes. Cookies should be slightly golden and the cookie should not be wet on top.
- Cool on baking sheets completely.
Have you maybe tried to share your baking talent with another to spread joy? Every bite of those wonderful, homemade treats is filled with love and tells a story of its own.