Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies

12 Days of Cookies
– Day 9-

These cookies are super tasty! As previously noted, I’m a major chocoholic. I’m also a huge coconut fan and have been craving it as of late, so this recipe kind of satisfied all my cravings. :)

They’re super easy to whip up, and the recipe can easily be halved or doubled if you want more/less. The original recipe was actually half of this and only yielded 15 cookies which seemed a bit small, so I doubled it for a normal 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

The batter will be very soft and so I did two different bakings – one with soft, warm dough and another with stiff, chilled dough. They produced the exact same result, so feel free to do either! This would be a prime candidate for a cookie dough that you make the night before and bake the day of, plus they bake quickly in 10 minutes flat.

Try to stick with using baking bars instead of opting for chips. Also, try to stick with bittersweet as the cookie itself is pretty sweet enough. I just buy the Ghirardelli baking bars and used the 60% cocoa bars for this recipe.

Please note that I increased the flour a little as my cookies turned out a bit flat. The original recipe calls for 2 cups and I increased to 2 1/4. They taste just fine the way they baked, but 1/4 cup should help them a tad to bring in the shape a bit more. Either way, these cookies have an awesome flavor and nice texture, so they’re sure to please. Happy Baking!

Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Adapted from Cooking Light
Yield: 2 1/2 dozen (#50 slightly rounded scoop)

2 cups flaked sweetened coconut
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
4-6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (see note)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C). Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a silpat.

2. Spread coconut on cookie sheet and bake for 7-10 minutes, or until lightly toasted. Stir coconut halfway through to ensure even color. Set aside to cool.

3. Using an electric mixer, cream the brown sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well in between additions. Add the vanilla.

4. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to the butter/sugar mixture and mix on low just until combined. Fold in the chopped chocolate and toasted coconut.

5. Drop dough by tablespoons or a slightly rounded #50 scoop on the cookie sheet, spacing them 2 inches apart. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes, rotating halfway through, or until lightly brown on the edges. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.


Cook’s Notes

The original recipe calls for 4 ounces of chocolate. I found that a few of my cookies didn’t have much chocolate in them, so next time I’m likely going to add another 1-2 ounces of chocolate to ensure that each cookie has enough. Feel free to adjust according to your taste.

Advertisements

Pistachio and Cherry Mexican Wedding Cakes

12 Days of Cookies
– Day 5 –

I love, love, love Mexican wedding cakes. The name itself is deceiving because it’s not a cake at all; it’s a cookie! I can recall going to the grocery store in my hometown as a little girl and my mom would allow me to have a cookie as we passed by the bakery. Most kids would opt for the cookie with icing and sprinkles, but no. I wanted the Mexican wedding cake. There was something about the tender crumb, the yummy nuts and the fact that it was coated in powdered sugar that appealed to me much more than the gross icing with that funky chemical taste. What exactly is in that store-bought stuff that makes it taste like one, giant chemical??

Anyway… ever since childhood, Mexican wedding cakes have been one of my favorite cookies to bake. When I ran across this recipe on Bon Appetit, I was immediately intrigued. Classically the Mexican wedding cake contains chopped pecans, but this version uses finely chopped pistachios and adds dried cherries. Yum!

I’ll be honest when I say that the pistachios don’t have an overwhelmingly strong flavor in this cookie. Instead the flavor is very subtle, but it pairs really well with the dried cherries. Do note this recipe does make a lot of cookies. I used a #50 scoop (equal to 1 Tablespoon) and it made 66 cookies. Yowzer! You could probably use a larger scoop and it would obviously yield less cookies, but I personally like these cookies to be bite-size because they contain a lot of butter and shouldn’t exactly be eaten the same way a large chocolate chip cookie would. That’s just my opinion, though. :)

I decided to sip on some hot tea while I snacked on a few of these freshly baked from the oven. It was a very nice combo and I think you’ll enjoy it as well. They’re not overwhelmingly sweet, despite being dunked in powdered sugar, and they’re melt-in-your mouth delicious. Go make them today!

Pistachio and Cherry Mexican Wedding Cakes

Pistachio and Cherry Mexican Wedding Cakes
Adapted from Bon Appetit
Yield: 66 cookies (#50 scoop)

2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar, plus more for coating
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup shelled unsalted natural pistachios (about 4 ounces), chopped (see note)
1 cup dried tart cherries or dried cranberries
3 1/3 cups sifted cake flour (see note)
1 2/3 cups sifted all-purpose flour

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C). Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a silpat.

2. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and salt, followed by the pistachios and cherries. Fold in the flour by hand just until mixed.

3. Scoop the cookies and place on prepared sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart. Bake in preheated oven for approximately 16 minutes, rotating halfway through baking, or until the bottoms just begin to color. Cool cookies on the sheet for 10 minutes before removing.

4. Pour about 2 cups of powdered sugar into a bowl. Working with a few warm cookies at a time, toss the cookies in the powdered sugar until they’re generously coated. Transfer to waxed paper to cool. Repeat with the remaining cookies. Store cooled cookies in an airtight container up to 4 days.


Cook’s Notes

1. All I was able to find were roasted, lightly salted pistachios, so I used those instead and reduced the amount of sugar to 1/2 teaspoon. I personally prefer to roast nuts when using them in cakes and cookies, so this eliminated that extra step.

2. Be sure to sift your flour first and then measure out the quantity needed.

3. Since this recipe is so large, you could easily cut it in half. The amounts of each flour are kind of hard to cut in half, though, so I’d recommend doing 1 3/4 cups cake flour and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour.

Chewy Brown Butter Ginger Oatmeal Cookies

12 Days of Cookies
– Day 3 –

This is another wonderful creation from Monique over at Ambitious Kitchen. While browsing through her blog, this recipe caught my eye as it contained a lot of yummy buzz words – chewy, brown butter, ginger, oatmeal… It seemed to embody everything I’d want in a holiday cookie. Plus, I already had all the ingredients on hand which is always a plus!

This cookie gets extra stars because it’s a very quick and easy cookie to whip up. Other than browning the butter, the ingredients are mixed together, scooped and baked. No refrigeration is needed, either! :)

The cookies have a really nice, spicy kick to them, plus they’re crispy on the edges and chewy in the middle. They did soften up a bit the next day and they kind of lost their crisp edges, but they were still quite wonderful! Once you have a batch of these in the oven and the aroma is filling the air, you’ll feel the holidays are all around you!

Chewy Brown Butter Ginger Oatmeal Cookies

Chewy Brown Butter Ginger Oatmeal Cookies
Adapted from Ambitious Kitchen
Yield: 2 dozen

3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup rolled oats (see note)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup molasses
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Approx. 1/2 cup coarse or granulated sugar, for rolling (see note)

1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. After a few minutes, the butter will begin to foam. At this point, you’ll want to whisk the butter frequently. You’ll start to see the bottom or edges of the pan get coated with browned butter. Whisk those bits off as they add to the taste. After a few more minutes, the butter will turn an amber color and will give off a nutty aroma. Remove from heat and immediately transfer to your mixing bowl to stop the cooking; set aside to cool. Click here for a picture of brown butter when it’s done.

2. Whisk together the flour, oats, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and nutmeg in a bowl; set aside.

3. With an electric mixer, mix the cooled butter and brown sugar until thoroughly blended. Beat in the egg, molasses and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Add the dry ingredients and beat on low speed until just combined.

4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C). Using a #50 scoop, scoop the dough, roll in the sugar (see note below) and place on a silpat or parchment-lined cookie sheet, approximately 1 inch apart. You’ll want to do level scoops of dough this time instead of the normal heaping scoop. If you do not have a cookie scoop, chill the dough first for about 15 minutes to make it easier to handle.

5. Bake cookies for 9-11 minutes, rotating halfway through, until lightly browned. If you want them a bit more crispy, bake for 11-12 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool on the cookie sheet for a few minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days.


Cook’s Notes

1. The recipe calls for rolled oats, otherwise known as “old-fashioned” oats. I only had the quick oats on hand and so I think that’s why my cookies spread more than normal. If you want a bulkier cookie, I’d suggest using the rolled oats per the recipe. Either works just fine, though, and I didn’t have any complaints about using quick oats! :)

2. You can find coarse sugar in the baking isle or at specialty cooking stores, but I just used Sugar in the Raw. It’s the perfect sugar to use because it’s coarse, it doesn’t melt and it’s often cheaper than buying specialty baking sugar.

3. The recipe instructs you to roll the balls in sugar, but I only really wanted it on the top and didn’t want to make them overly sweet. I simply dunked the tops of my cookies in the sugar and left the sides and bottom as is. You can see from the picture they still have a wonderful glisten to them from the sugar crystals.

Cinnamon Rolled Cakes

12 Days of Cookies
– Day 2 –

I first tried this recipe nearly 15 years ago while visiting family in Illinois. My Aunt Rosie is an amazing cook, and upon our arrival she had these cookies freshly baked and ready for our consumption. I was in the midst of attending culinary school and was learning all these fancy new recipes, yet this simple shortbread cookie completely blew me away. I couldn’t get enough of them, and I insisted I have the recipe before our departure!

The one thing that strikes me as kind of funny is how this cookie strongly resembles a potato slice. I mean, doesn’t it look like little potato slices? Maybe it’s just me. ;-)

Cinnamon Rolled Cakes

I even took a batch of these to work recently, along with 3 other types of cookies, and a co-worker stopped me in the hallway and said, “Oh man, those little cookies that look like potatoes? Those were my favorite!!” I laughed because at least I wasn’t the only person that saw the potato resemblance. :)

These cookies are ridiculously easy to make, they don’t require any special ingredients or equipment and they can be prepared in very little time. They have this wonderfully tender crumb, and the outer edge has this nice, crispy cinnamon sugar crust. I promise that you’ll impress any guests you serve these to, and they’ll be asking for the recipe just like I did!

The original recipe calls for the ingredients to be combined with a pastry cutter (see example here), but I’ve found it much easier to use a food processor. The ingredients are combined together until the mixture resembles coarse meal. The egg yolk is then added and the mixture is pulsed until it just starts to form a ball. If you don’t have a food processor, simply combine all ingredients except the yolk using either a pastry cutter, 2 forks or your fingers (like pie dough). Then add the egg and mix around with your hands until it comes together in a loose ball.

The ball is then split into two pieces and each piece is shaped into a log. A beaten egg white is brushed on the logs, and then they’re rolled in a cinnamon sugar mixture. The dough needs to be chilled for at least an hour, and then the cookies are simply sliced and baked. This is a great recipe that can be made ahead of time, and cookies can be baked as needed. I’ve frozen the dough before and then thawed, sliced and baked with perfect results.

Here are a few pictures that will provide you with a visual step-by-step guide to making these cookies:

Cinnamon Rolled Cakes
Cinnamon Rolled Cakes
Cinnamon Rolled Cakes
Cinnamon Rolled Cakes
Cinnamon Rolled Cakes
Cinnamon Rolled Cakes

Cinnamon Rolled Cakes

One final note is that you may notice I don’t use a pastry brush to apply the egg whites, but that’s because I tend to find it easier to just use my hands. It’s a bit messier that way, but you really want to ensure the log is completely coated in egg white so the cinnamon sugar mixture will stick. It’s a bit of a funny feeling, but just go with the flow. Cooking is all about having fun, using your hands and sometimes getting dirty! :)

Cinnamon Rolled Cakes
Adapted from my Aunt Rosie :)
Yields: 2 1/2 dozen

2 1/4 cups all-purpose four
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup butter, cold and cubed
1 large egg, separated
3 Tablespoons light brown sugar
1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

1. Mix flour and sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Add the cold, cubed butter and pulse the mixture a few times until it resembles coarse meal. Add the egg yolk and pulse a few more times, or just until the mixture begins to take form.

2. Dump the mixture onto a very lightly floured surface and blend the dough with your hands until it starts to form a ball. This might take 30 seconds to a minute to come together once your hands warm the dough a bit. Divide the dough into 2 pieces and form each piece into a log, approximately 8″ long and 1 1/2″ in diameter.

3. Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl; set aside. Put the 1 egg white in another small bowl, add a dash of salt and whisk for a few seconds with a fork. (Egg whites, otherwise known as albumen, contain protein which causes the egg white to have its lumpy form. Adding a little salt to the egg white helps to break down the albumen and allow for a more even coating. This is also helpful when making an egg wash for pie crusts, bread, etc.)

4. Place a single log on a piece of waxed or parchment paper. Evenly coat the log with the egg white and then transfer the log to a clean piece of waxed paper that has been sprinkled with some of the brown sugar mixture. Roll the log until it is generously coated with half the brown sugar cinnamon mixture. Roll the log up in the paper. Repeat with the other log and place both in the fridge for at least 1 hour to chill. *Please note that I recommend you move the egg white-coated log to a clean sheet of parchment paper because I’ve left it on the same sheet with the egg white and it causes the crust to be kind of lumpy and messy. Plus, when it bakes the edges are not clean.

5. Slice the cookies approximately 1/3″ thick and place onto a silpat or parchment-lined cookie sheet, 1″ apart. Since I like clean cuts, I tend to cut off both ends of the logs. I simply smash those two pieces together and bake them along with the rest. They’re not visually appealing, but they make for great testers! :) Also, be sure to make your cuts as straight as possible so it ensures the cookies bake evenly.

6. Bake the cookies in a preheated 350 degree F (176 degree C) oven for 12-15 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking, until they are very lightly golden brown. These cookies can burn quite easily, so check them at 12 minutes and then every minute after that. Mine took about 13-14 minutes. Allow the cookies to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

These can be eaten alone, dunked in milk or even better – dunked in coffee or hot tea! Enjoy!

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

12 Days of Cookies
– Day 1 –

The search is over. THIS is the ultimate chocolate chip cookie. The other Chocolate Chip Cookies and the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies that I made earlier this year are both incredibly good (especially the PB ones), but wow… I really can’t say enough about these cookies.

The cookie itself is crispy on the edges and chewy in the middle, exactly the way a chocolate chip cookie should be (in my opinion). Monique of Ambitious Kitchen took it to the next level by stuffing the middle with Nutella and then sprinkling a little sea salt on top. The result is seriously life-changing! She really outdid herself, and you all would be ridiculously silly to not heed my advice which is to go out and make these cookies NOW! You would be equally silly not to pay a visit to her blog. It’s really fabulous and filled with all sorts of yummy things to make!

I mean, look at that melty goodness…

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Maybe dunked in a little milk? Or almond milk since I’m lactose-intolerant? :)

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

You might wonder how the Nutella gets in the middle. Actually, you might even wonder what Nutella is. If you’re wondering what Nutella is, shame on you!! Just kidding. :) I do understand that not everyone knows about every culinary creation ever invented, but Nutella is one of those things that you must have in your life! It ranks up there with Biscoff Cookie Spread, or as Trader Joe’s fans know it, Speculoos.

Nutella is an ultra creamy chocolate hazelnut spread. It kinda makes me giggle because they recommend you spread it on bread, but I’d much rather just have a giant spoonful of it!! Cookie Butter, for those of you that don’t know, is a creamy version of those Belgian Biscoff Cookies that you might recognize from the airlines. They’re an airy, crisp shortbread-type cookie and they’re pretty much amazing! They make both a creamy and crunchy cookie butter and both are good, but I stick with the creamy as the other one leaves bits of cookies stuck in my teeth. Ick. By the way, there will definitely be more recipes to come in the future that incorporate Cookie Butter!!

Alright, back to how you get the super delicious stuff into the cookies. Monique suggests you refrigerate the Nutella in order to make it a bit harder, but my ex-professional kitchen days immediately told me I should freeze the stuff. So, I used a #70 scoop and scooped out half of the number of balls I needed onto a small, parchment-lined sheet. You see, the #70 is the smallest I have on hand, but it’s still too big for a cookie (unless you want it REALLY stuffed!). I wouldn’t recommend that, though, because it might just ooze out and make a burnt mess on your cookie sheet and we don’t want that. SO, I froze the little balls of tasty goodness and then cut them in half, yielding enough for my entire recipe. If you have some extra, then you’ll just have to eat them.

Darn. ;-)

The cookie dough (after being refrigerated 2 hours) is then scooped, flattened, filled with a frozen ball of Nutella, rolled back into a ball, slightly flattened, sprinkled with sea salt (if desired) and then baked. Easy, right? ;-) It sounds complicated, but let me give you an easy step-by-step breakdown that I think will help you in your cookie baking process.

Step 1 – Remove the frozen balls of Nutella and cut in half. Return the pieces to the freezer.

Step 2 – Scoop out 8 balls of dough (or however much fits onto one cookie sheet).

Step 3 – Flatten the 8 balls of dough and lay back on the cookie sheet. (By the way, I line mine with a silpat, but you can use parchment paper as well.)

Step 4 – Remove 8 pieces of frozen Nutella and place one piece on each cookie. (See first image below)

Step 5 – Taking one cookie at a time, wrap the dough around the Nutella. Roll around in your hand to seal the edges and then place on the cookie sheet 2 inches apart. (See second image below)

Step 6Slightly flatten cookies and sprinkle with a little coarse sea salt. (See third image below)

Step 7 – Bake cookies at 350 degrees F (176 degrees C) for 9-11 minutes, turning sheet halfway through baking, or until edges are slightly browned. My cookies took exactly 10 minutes, so I did 5 minutes, rotated the tray and finished for another 5.

Here are a few step-by-step pictures so you can see the assembly process:

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

The result is SO worth the time spent, so don’t be scared by the fact that you can’t just scoop and bake these. I promise you will not regret the extra time!

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Ambitious Kitchen
Yield: 2-2 1/2 dozen

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar (*See Note)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon plain greek yogurt (*See Note)
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (*See Note)
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
Nutella (approx. 1 cup is needed)
Coarse sea salt for sprinkling, if desired

1. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. After a few minutes, the butter will begin to foam. At this point, you’ll want to whisk the butter frequently. You’ll start to see the bottom or edges of the pan get coated with browned butter. Whisk those bits off as they add to the taste. After a few more minutes, the butter will turn an amber color and will give off a nutty aroma. Remove from heat and immediately transfer to your mixing bowl to stop the cooking; set aside to cool. Click here for a picture of brown butter when it’s done.

2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt in another bowl; set aside.

3. Using an electric mixer, cream the cooled butter with the sugars until light and fluffy. Add the egg, yolk, vanilla and yogurt and mix until combined.

4. Add the dry ingredients and beat on low until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

5. Chill the dough for 2 hours in the refrigerator. Alternately, you can scoop the cookies, place on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

6. While your dough is chilling, scoop the Nutella onto a parchment-lined sheet and place in the freezer. They’ll only take about 15 minutes to get firm. Cut the balls in half and return them to the freezer for later use.

7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C). Scoop and flatten 8 cookie balls, or however many fit on your cookie sheet. Place a frozen Nutella half onto each cookie, wrap the cookie dough around it and then roll in your hand for a few seconds to seal the edges.

8. Place the cookies on a cookie sheet, spaced 2 inches apart, and slightly flatten. Sprinkle lightly with coarse sea salt and bake for 9-11 minutes, rotating halfway through baking, until cookies are light brown on the edges.

9. Allow cookies to cool for at least 5 minutes on the sheet before removing them. While they’re cooling, you can begin scooping, flattening and filling your next batch of cookies. Store cooled cookies in an airtight container up to 3 days (if they last that long in your house!).


Cook’s Notes

1. I normally prefer light brown sugar over dark brown, but for this cookie the dark brown sugar tastes so yummy! You can easily substitute light brown sugar, though, if that’s all you have.

2. I didn’t have greek yogurt on hand, so I just used a spoonful of sour cream and the result was awesome.

3. This recipe calls for 3 different kinds of chocolate chips and you only use a little of each. I’m not sure I necessarily tasted all the various chocolates, especially since the Nutella flavor is so strong, nor do I necessarily think all 3 types are essential. These cookies are awesome no matter what, so don’t stress if you only have 1 or 2 kinds of chocolate chip. You could probably play around with the amounts and kinds to your liking and they’ll still be fabulous, so have fun with it!

Triple M Cookies

I’m back with another awesome cookie recipe. Did the name intrigue you? Well, don’t get too excited. I was just too lazy to write out the full name. ;-) I found this recipe on one of my favorite foodie sites Food52. On the site, they’re called Magical Marvelous Memorable Cookies. That’s just too much of a mouthful, no pun intended. So we’re just going to call these Triple M Cookies and be done with it. :)

These cookies are an excellent idea for a person who wants to make cookies on the fly. They’re essentially a basic chocolate chip cookie recipe with other stuff tossed in for fun. The beauty of this cookie is you can make it a thousand different ways depending on what you put in it. The author suggests granola or any other cereal, crushed pretzel pieces or some other salty snack food, chocolate chips or chocolate candies, any type of nut and various spices, such as cinnamon, allspice and cardamom (if desired). You could even toss in dried fruit, such as cherries, raisins, currants or chopped up apricots. Really, the possibilities are endless.

I made these cookies twice. The first time I used up some leftover Rice Krispies, crushed pretzel sticks, pecan pieces, milk chocolate chips and semisweet chocolate chips. They were awesome, although I couldn’t really taste the Rice Krispies. The second time around I made them exactly the same, except I substituted granola for the Rice Krispies. I liked that result much better, plus it allowed me the chance to find the perfect baking time.

As is my new method with most cookie recipes, I immediately scooped the batter into balls onto a cookie sheet, wrapped them in plastic wrap and refrigerated them for a few hours or overnight. If you’re too impatient to wait, I’m sure they’ll work just fine. The cookie will have an overall better texture, though, if you can allow them to chill for at least 1 hour. :) I lightly pressed these cookies down and, in my opinion, they spread just the perfect amount. These cookies are amazing out of the oven and have a crisp and chewy texture. The next day they’re not quite as soft, but they still have wonderfully crisp edges and a chewy center (so long as you don’t overbake them!)

I definitely plan on having some fun with these cookies and trying out different candies, cereals, chocolate, fruits and nuts. Let me know if you come up with any fun flavor combinations!

Triple M Cookies

Triple M Cookies
Adapted from Food52
Yield: 2 – 2 1/2 dozen

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 3/4 sticks (7 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup granola (or other cereal)
1/2 cup crushed salted pretzel pieces (or other salty snack food)
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or other chocolate pieces)
1/2 cup chopped pecans or other nuts, optional (See Note)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, allspice or cardamom, if desired

1. In a medium bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.

2. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy; scrape bowl well. Add egg and vanilla, beat for about 30 seconds and then scrape the bowl.

3. On low speed, add the flour mixture until just incorporated. Fold in the granola, pretzels, chocolate chips and nuts.

4. Scoop dough by rounded scoopfuls and place on a parchment-lined pan. Cover dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight. Alternately, you can freeze them for about 20 minutes and then bake them.

5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (218 degrees C) and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat.

6. Place chilled cookies 2 inches apart on cookie sheet and lightly press down to flatten. Bake for 10-12 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking, or until the edges are lightly brown. Do not over bake!! My cookies were perfect at 11 minutes, but you’ll need to check them closely as all ovens are different.

7. Put cookies on a cooling rack until completely cooled. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.


Cook’s Notes

1. If you do not add nuts, replace that 1/2 cup with more cereal, pretzels or chocolate chips. Otherwise, cookies might spread too much

Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have been on the hunt for the “perfect” chocolate chip cookie recipe for.. well.. as long as I can recall. I cannot tell you how many recipes I’ve tried, none of which ever 100% satisfied me. Pretty much every cookie tastes great right out of the oven, but the true test of a cookie recipe is how the cookie tastes the following day or even 2 days later. That’s where most recipes fall short. The good ol’ Toll House recipe is a prime example. Those cookies are near perfection the day you bake them, but the following day they’re rock hard. I’ve tried underbaking them, I’ve added a packet of vanilla pudding mix (which is actually a decent fix) and I’ve experimented with different fats instead of using just butter, per the recipe on the bag. Ultimately, the recipe just doesn’t cut it in my opinion (sorry, Toll House).

I’ve admittedly never been an expert at making cookies. I’m not sure what it is. I went to culinary school, but for some reason cookies have never been my forte. An ex-boyfriend of mine even told me once that everything I bake is amazing… except my cookies. I won’t name names, but he knows who he is. ;-) And it’s okay. I didn’t take offense because deep down I knew I was awful at making cookies! Honestly, I think I overthink things too much and that results in my downfall. I try to make recipes more complex or utilize skills I learned in school, but honestly it’s often best when you just keep things simple. (Doesn’t that apply to a lot of things in life?)

With that being said, I stumbled across this recipe on Averie’s blog and really wanted to try it. Her pictures had me instantly drooling, and the addition of cornstarch was intriguing. I honestly can’t say I’ve made a cookie with cornstarch before, so I was excited to try something new. The results are awesome. This cookie is super easy to make, and they’re crisp on the outside and chewy in the middle. While they didn’t stay crisp on days 2 and 3, I’m happy to report that they were still SOFT! No more hard cookies!

I plan on experimenting a bit with this base and adding in different types of chocolate, nuts and who knows what else. This time around I used 1 cup Ghirardelli semi-sweet chips and 1 cup Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet chips. I’ll definitely keep you all posted on my future experimentations. ;-)

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Chocolate chips folded into the batter

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Cookie dough scooped and ready to be refrigerated

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Final product – perfect with a cold glass of milk or almond milk!

Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Averie Cooks

Yield: 2 dozen medium-sized cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup shortening*
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or chunks)
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips (or chunks)

1. Using a mixer, beat the butter and shortening on low speed until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the sugars and beat on medium-high speed until creamed and well combined, about 3 minutes. Scrape the bowl and add the egg and vanilla.

2. Combine the flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl. Add all at once to the butter/egg mixture and mix on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute. Add the chocolate chips and mix on low for 1 more minute, or fold in by hand.

3. Using a #50/.6 oz. scoop, scoop out heaping mounds of dough and place on a large plate or tray. If you don’t have a scoop, a heaping Tablespoon of dough will work. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 5 days.

4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C) and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat.*

5. Place cookies 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes*, or until very lightly golden brown around the edges. Be careful not to overbake! It might seem that they’re underbaked, but I promise they’ll be perfect! Cool completely on a wire rack and then store in an airtight container.


Cook’s Notes

1. Averie’s recipe called for 3/4 cup butter, but I decided to replace 1/4 cup of the butter with shortening because I personally feel a mix of the two fats yields a better cookie. Please feel free to use all butter, though, as I know the result will be great!

2. If you aren’t familiar with Silpats, then you need to familiarize yourself away! You can find them at Sur La Table or any high-end kitchen store. Don’t be scared by the price because, if taken care of, they’ll last you many years! I’m an avid baker and I’ve had mine for 5+ years.

(Some tips: Wash Silpats with warm water and mild soap. Do not let them soak in harsh chemicals or bleach. Do not use a knife on them. Do not fold them. When you are done cleaning them, dry with a towel or allow to air dry. Store flat or roll loosely. If you heed my advice, I promise you they’ll be your best friend!)

3. My cookies took closer to 11-12 minutes. Averie was pretty specific that 10 minutes was the absolute max, but I’m telling you… mine would have been completely raw if I pulled them at 10 mins! So I advise you to set your timer for 4 minutes, and then rotate the pan and set it for another 4 minutes. At that point you can check it every minute or so until they’re lightly brown around the edges. I always feel that my next batch cooks more quickly, so be careful to check each subsequent batch so that it doesn’t overbake.

Also, I ever so slightly flattened my cookies. I didn’t do it with the first batch and I wasn’t completely happy with the results. Don’t go flattening them like you would a peanut butter cookie – just very lightly flatten. Feel free to experiment just as I did, though. You might prefer them as is or you might prefer them a tad more flat.