Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Chocoate Chip Cookie Dilema

No matter who you are, you have an opinion on chocolate chip cookies.  Almost everyone I know revels in a moist chewy with crispy edges kind of cookie.  Not my husband.  I love him dearly but the "American" chocolate chip cookie is not something he enjoys.  He likes his cookies "dunkable".  He likes them harder, dryer, crumbly... more like the store bought, dare I utter the words "Chips Ahoy".  I can not stand those cookies.  Not only are they full of junk, they don't taste nice.  So I have been on a mission to find a crispier, more crumbly but not flat, chocolate chip cookie recipe.  Still no such luck! 

Now, head with me in the "Way Back Machine" to my freshman year of college when I had a hypochondriac room-mate named Donna.  To this day I cannot for the life of me remember her last name, and yet I digress.  ANYWAY... Donna's Mom would send her care packages with the most amazing little home made chocolate chip cookies.  They were light little balls filled with chocolate chips, but what I would call dry, crumbly and well, crumb makers!  Delicious.  I have searched the internet high and low with no luck for something like Donna's Mom used to send to us.  So if you have a recipe that fits what I am describing, could you please send it to me????

So in my state of discontent, and because I don't like sickly sweet cookies, I am attempting a chocolate chip shortbread cookie bar recipe today.  We shall see.  The pan is in the oven baking right now.  One half has Easter Colored M&M's on top and the other half walnuts since I love walnuts in my chocolate chips and my kids do not.  I am not sure these will do it for my husband, but I am crossing my fingers. 

As for the recipe, I just made a basic shortbread recipe, added chocolate chips (a full bag of dark chocolate chips) and done.  I pressed it all out on my sheet tray and then chilled it on there before baking.  A lot easier to spread before chilling.  Added the M&M's and nuts on top before baking and pressed them down into the dough slightly.  I had to triple the shortbread recipe to fit my baking tray.  It's great really because if they are good, shortbread cookies freeze really well!  They sometimes taste better after freezing.

Here is my basic shortbread recipe:  P.S. the source on this recipe is from an old Joy of Baking or Betty Crocker cook book.  Had it in my recipe box for years.

3/4 cup (1 1/2 stick) (170 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated white sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (210 grams) all purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup Chocolate Chips (I prefer dark chocolate but use what you love)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and place rack in center of oven.   Grease with butter (or use a cooking spray) a 9 x 9 inch (23 x 23 cm) pan.

Using a mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in the vanilla extract.  Add the flour and salt and beat until the dough just comes together then add your chocolate chips if using.  Press onto the bottom of your greased pan and bake for about 20 minutes, or until pale golden in color.

Reminder:  I tripled this recipe for my sheet pan.  Otherwise as noted above, the recipe is suitable for a 9x9 square banking pan.


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