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Posts Tagged ‘chocolate chip cookies’

when it’s the first night of little birds baking club…what else would you make?! chocolate chip cookies are a classic. everyone needs a solid chocolate chip cookie recipe up their sleeve. we asked the girls how many of them had made chocolate chip cookies and a number of hands went up in the air. when we asked how many had made cookies from scratch, and not out of a plastic tube…all the hands went down. needless to say, the girls were pretty pumped to make AND eat these little guys. they all herded around me and took turns adding ingredients. oh, and hands down – being the one who gets to crack the egg….is the most coveted responsibility.

with little bird recipes, i’ll point out some tips that will be helpful for a new baker…and obvious to an experienced baker. bare with me on some of these….or enjoy them, depending on where you stand.

adapted from Baking Basics, by Betty Crocker

ingredients:
(wet ingredients)
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) *unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 large eggs
(dry ingredients)
4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 12oz bag** semisweet chocolate chips

equipment:
stand mixer w/paddle attachment
OR large bowl w/wooden spoon
cookie sheets
cooling racks

* instead of using all butter, i used half butter half shortening. my butter vs shortening experience is: butter makes a better tasting cookie, but also makes a flat cookie while shortening helps the cookie keep a good shape…..so using both = best of both worlds (taste and shape).

** can you believe this recipe actually called for a 24oz bag of chocolate chips?!?! i mean, my dad’s famous cookies only call for 6oz…so i had a hard time even using a whole 12oz bag. i cut it off at about 10oz….i mean, come on? you want some cookie with your chocolate chips?!

preheat your oven to 375º

prep – since your butter and eggs need to be room temperature, start by prepping all your ingredients. remove butter and eggs from the fridge and let sit on your counter while you measure out the rest of your ingredients. the time it takes to measure out all your ingredients into separate bowls….should be just enough time for your butter to soften up enough to beat easily.

tips & tricks:
“packed” brown sugar
: means to pack it into the measuring cup – pressing it in firmly. if the brown sugar has been packed firmly, it will keep the measuring cup’s shape when removed – if it crumbles apart, you have not packed it well.

flour: when you measure your flour, don’t scoop you’re measuring cup into the flour and shake or tap on the counter to get in as much flour as you can. you want your baked goods to be light and fluffy, not dense, so the way you measure your flour makes a big difference. instead of using your cup to scoop up flour, spoon your flour into the measuring cup, and level it off with the back of a knife. also, take the time to sift your flour. this just helps to get air into your flour. if you don’t have a sifter, just use a fork to stir up your flour.

eggs: if you want to avoid egg shells in your dough, crack your eggs into a separate bowl and make sure any accidental shells are removed before mixing them in. also, crack your egg on the side of the bowl….not the side of the counter – the less raw egg spills you have to worry about cleaning up, the better.

mix – using your stand mixer with the paddle attachment OR by hand in a large bowl with a wooden spoon, beat your butter, both sugars, vanilla and eggs at a medium speed till light and fluffy.

we call these our “wet ingredients” (mix first)

at a low speed, slowly stir in your flour, baking soda and salt. add in your chocolate chips. (by all means, go crazy with the 24oz if you want to….but, i’m just sayin, my 10oz was plenty)

these are our “dry ingredients” (mix into your wet ingredients)

bake – using a ice cream scoop or two spoons, transfer your cookie dough to cookie sheets. bake at 375º for 12-15 minutes. mine only took 8 minutes…so be on the lookout. once the edges have turned golden brown, remove and place the pan on top of a cooling rack for about five minutes. then carefully (once the cookies aren’t ooey-gooey anymore) transfer just the cookies from the pan to the cooling rack. cool to room temperature, if you can wait that long.

tips & tricks:
baking time really varies from oven to oven. always check on your treat earlier than the recipe calls for. with cookies, what you’re really looking for, are the edges to begin to turn golden brown. the cookie will also start to form cracks on the top. once your edges are brown, remove your cookies and place the pan on top of a cooling rack for about five minutes, or until the cookies can be removed from the pan without falling apart in a gooey mess. as the cookies cool….the insides of them keep baking so what seems like underdone when you first remove them from the oven, becomes the perfect, soft, break-apart without hearing a crunch, cookie once it has cooled.

that’s it. once your cookies have cooled, bust out the milk and enjoy.

for the record dad, the recipe was named “the best” chocolate chip cookies. in no way do they trump your famous cookies, so don’t feel threatened. love you! :)

-L

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“my tongue is still thinking about mousse”

it is officially the holiday season, and we couldn’t be happier. this is one of my favorite times of the year. great food, plenty of dessert and warm fuzzy bath robes to lessen the chill in the old apartment. but, according to our kickboxing instructor this is when the average person gains an extra 8 lbs. and let’s face it, for our co-workers we definitely have to take some of the blame for those lbs. and for that, we apologize in advance. but in the meantime, please enjoy this delicious, easy cake layered with mousse and topped with almonds. and stay tuned at the end of this post for a twist on the ordinary chocolate chip cookie.

ingredients:

1 box devils food cake that includes pudding in the mix.

1 1/4 cups water

1/2 cup oil

3 eggs

3 cups whipping cream

12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chunks

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/4 cup sliced and toasted almonds.

equipment:

1 – 15″ x 10″ x 1″ cookie sheet

1 – small cookie sheet

crisco for greasing

flour for coating

spatula for folding

mixer for mixing

:D

prepare your cookie sheet. using shortening, coat the bottom and sides of your cookie sheet. lightly dust with flour and make sure to cover the entire pan. preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

mix your cake, as directed on the back of the box. pour into your flour coated pan and bake for 18 minutes. Do not follow the timing instructions on the back of the box. When cooking in such a shallow pan, it doesn’t need to cook as long as it normally would. during the last 7 minutes pour your almonds onto another cookie sheet and toast them. half way through those 7 minutes shake the pan a little as to toast other sides of the almonds.

while it’s baking, pour your heavy whipping cream into the mixing bowl and set your mixer on a medium speed and start whipping it up until you have whipped cream. approximately 8 minutes. while this is going, on low heat pour your chocolate into a medium sauce pan. as it starts to melt, stir constantly. once melted take off heat and add your almond extract and mix. set off to the side for about 10 minutes or until it’s cooled down. once cool fold into your whipping cream and mix until your cream is now chocolate brown. chill in the fridge.

let it cool. once your cake is out of the oven, let it sit about 5 minutes in the pan. after that, carefully flip your pan over using your cooling racks and remove from the pan. let cool completely. then divide in thirds, cutting approximately every 7 inches so that you have three separate cakes for layering. (using a bread knife) once separate place the first cake top side down, onto the serving plate you will be using. carefully apply a generous layer of mousse, leaving your edges mousse free. the idea is to have the layers exposed. add your second layer, spread mousse and add your third layer, spreading mousse on top. sprinkle almonds atop for garnish.

there you have it. the perfect little holiday party worthy cake that will have your quests salivating for more!!!!  please enjoy and may your holidays be filled with lots of family, friends and of course love.

chocolate, chocolate chip cookies

i have baked this recipe so many times i think i could make them in my sleep. please note that these aren’t your typical chocolate chip cookies. they are light and fluffy and almost cake-like and they are slightly less sugary than most chocolate chip cookies. i make these for my husband who is diabetic and he loves them so much. it makes me happy to see him eating chocolate chip cookies and knowing that they are a decent alternative when eaten in moderation.

ingredients:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, softened

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup sugar substitute (i use splenda or apriva)

1 egg

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons cocoa

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons skim milk

1/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

equipment:

1 ungreased cookie sheet

mixer of course

1 medium bowl

1 small bowl

and the usual measuring instruments

preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

in a medium bowl, mix sugar, sugar substitute and butter until smooth. add your egg and vanilla and blend well.

in a small bowl, mix flour, salt, baking soda and cocoa together. alternating with the milk, poor into your butter mixture and blend well. stir in the chocolate chips.

on and ungreased cookie sheet, spoon out your cookie dough. bake for 7- 9 minutes. cool. enjoy.

quick and easy cookies, to enjoy at a moments notice.

happy holidays,

b


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