How to… Bake Cookies

Tanya Marsh

Tanya Marsh

Though the official bake-off with my buds is yet to come, I think I make a mean batch of chocolate chip cookies. Listen and learn.

The gooey stuff. I start by melting (not just softening, mind you, but liquifying) two and a half sticks of real butter. Put in a large bowl with one cup white sugar and one cup brown sugar, two eggs, and two teaspoons of vanilla. Mix it all together, but don’t try to beat it into a fluff. Note: if you want double-chocolate cookies, stir one-third cup of unsweetened chocolate into the brown and white sugars before adding any of the wet ingredients.

The dry stuff. Some people mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, so as to get them all nicely combined before getting them wet. I don’t like to wash more dishes than necessary, so I just mix the dry stuff right on top of the wet stuff, but I don’t stir it all together until the very end.

Begin with three and one-fourth cups of flour (dumped on top of the other stuff, as mentioned). Then add one teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of salt. Stir into the four, but not the wet stuff. Once the dry ingredients are well mixed, then stir the flour mixture into the butter and sugar mixture.

The chocolate. This is the easy part: open a bag of chocolate chips or M&Ms, and dump them in. My recipe calls for the whole bag, but I don’t always go for it. Whatever strikes your fancy. Some people actually prefer chocolate chip cookies without the chocolate chips.

Bake. Drop the dough onto cookie sheets using spoons. If you want really round cookies, roll them in your hands first. Then bake for about 10 minutes at 375 degrees. Don’t overbake, or they won’t be nice and soft. Of course, if you don’t have an oven, you can skip this step and just eat the dough as is.

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