In a rather hilarious moment on Friends, Monica asks Phoebe for her grandmother’s famous cookie recipe as a wedding present. Sadly, the recipe was lost in the fire that destroyed Phoebe’s apartment, but Phoebe did find one last cookie from a batch she froze. Monica tries in vain to decode the recipe using her culinary skills, but in the end, everyone comes upon the realization that her grandmother actually uses the Nestle Tollhouse recipe. Watch the clip – it’s really quite funny.
I spent late yesterday afternoon making a batch of what I think are the best cookies, & they actually are not from the famous House of Toll; rather, it’s an adapted recipe from the Better Homes & Gardens cookbook. Now, I’ve burnt many a cookie in my day, but after many batches, I can proudly say I’ve got it just right. These simple cookies turn out perfect every time, with consistent shape, density, & taste.
When you cook, you can mess with ingredients, order, time, etc. As long as it tastes good & everything is cooked thoroughly, it doesn’t really matter. The key to perfect baking, however, is that, quite simply, you follow the recipe perfectly. I really admire people who can create their own cookies, cakes, & the like, because my track record when it comes to experimental baking is not nearly as good as my other culinary achievements. As such, you must follow this recipe 100% if you want the best cookies.
1 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated (regular) sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups walnuts (you can leave these out if you really hate nuts)
a small ice cream scoop (I use one similar to this)
(you’ll also need the usual cups & spoons, a large spoon for stirring, cookie sheets, & a big bowl)
Twelve Easy Steps:
01 Preheat oven to 375°
02 Soften butter/margarine in microwave for about 45 seconds
03 Combine butter/margarine, sugars, baking soda & salt in a large bowl using mixer. Scrape the sides as you go, to ensure proper mixing.
04 Add eggs & vanilla; mix thoroughly
05 Add 1 1/2 cups of flour; mix thoroughly
06 Add remaining cup flour, stirring thoroughly by hand
07 Add chocolate chip & walnuts; stir thoroughly by hand
08 Drop cookies onto parchment covered cookie sheets* (they really do work best) using the small ice cream scoop (mine is 1 1/2 inches across), keeping size & shape consistent. Don’t try to put too many on one sheet; usually 12 is perfect on a standard size cookie sheet.
09 Move oven racks to middle most slots; I recommend only baking two sheets at a time.
10 Bake for 8 minutes only; they’ll look a little lighter than you’d expect, & will still be a bit doughy. Never fear – once cool, they’ll be perfectly chewy.
11 Remove from oven & remove from cookie sheet as soon as possible – the parchment cools very quickly, & you should be able to move it, cookies & all, after a minute at most.
12. Repeat steps 8-11 until all cookies are baked! You’ll have between 5-6 dozen cookies to share with your favorite people (& make sure that you do!)
*if you don’t have parchment, but still yearn for chocolate chip goodness, be sure to leave your cookie sheet ungreased, & still remove them from the cookie sheet as fast as you can with a spatula.
Voila! Perfect cookies, every time. Everyone will want to know your secret – be sure to share! That being said, do let me know what you think after you’ve tried it out!