I’ve never considered myself much of a jetsetter, but this weekend, that will all change. Because I will be jetsetting to Charlotte, NC for just shy of 72 hours to visit my cousin Catherine.
I’m not one for politics – I think I’ve only voted in one election since I turned 18 and when the conversation turns to politics at the lunch table at work, I usually slyly pull my chair away from the table and scoot back to my desk. Now if you wanted to discuss the Kardashians or who the bitchiest housewife was, I’d be all ears!
My cousin Catherine however, political ROCKSTAR! She did a semester in D.C. in College, then moved there after she graduated and started working for a lobbyist that works with Afflac (she scored some amazing Duck chachkis as a result of this) and now, she’s living in Charlotte, planning the Democratic National Convention coming up in September – how freaking awesome is that? She moved there last June, and I promised myself that I would get down there to visit, and before I knew it, a year had gone by, and I realized that her time in the ‘linas was limited! So I booked myself a ticket, told Dave to behave and hopefully not break any limbs at his downhill mountain bike race in VT, and now I’m “goneee to carolinaaa in my mindddddd” AND Catherine’s brother, my cousin “Buddy” (we’ve called him this since birth – his real name ‘Chris’ will never be used by me, even when he’s 40 with children) is making the trip too. Catherine and I went to visit Buddy while he was studying abroad in Ireland a few years ago, and if this weekend’s trip is anything like that one, we’re in for an epic couple of days!
I had these chocolate chip cookies at my cousin Charlie’s graduation party a couple of weeks ago, and shockingly enough, they weren’t Ina’s! I told my aunt Nancy I needed the recipe, stat. I haven’t met many chocolate chip cookies that I didn’t like, however, these were beyond good.
Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
From Baking Illustrated
2 cups plus 2 tbsp. unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
12 tbsp (1.5 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled until warm
1 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1-1.5 cups semisweet chocolate chips
(I used a combo of chips and chunks)
1) Adjust the oven racks to the upper and lower-middle positions and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets w/ parchment paper or non-stick cooking spray.
2) Whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.
3) In a standing mixer with the paddle attachment (or hand mixer), mix the butter and sugars until thoroughly blended. Beat in the egg, yolk and vanilla until combined. Add dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined. Stir in chips. (Dough will be somewhat soft)
4) Take 1/4 cup of the dough and roll into a ball. Hold the dough ball with the fingertips of both hands and pull into 2 halves. Rotate the halves 90 degrees so the smooth side is on the bottom and the jagged surfaces are facing up. Then join the 2 halves together at the base, forming a single ball again, with jagged edges facing up.
*This sounds strange, but I think it really does make a difference in the shape/texture of the cookies. I tried to take pics of the process as best I could with doughy hands, however, here is the scanned illustration from the ‘professionals’. You can click on it to enlarge.
5) Place dough balls on prepared baking sheets, spacing them about 2.5 inches apart. Rotate the baking sheets front to back and top to bottom half way through the baking time.
6) Bake until cookies are golden brown around the edges, while still soft and puffy in the center, about 15-18 minutes. Cool cookies on the baking sheets and then once they’re cooled, remove w/ a wide metal spatula.
I know this particular recipe for C.C. cookies sounds a little involved, however, it’s really not much more effort and I truly think the extra steps make a big difference in the shape, texture and taste of the cookies. Perfect amount of chewy and crispiness. Thanks Nance!
So now, I’ve already had one of these for breakfast, and will probably have 1-2 more on my plane ride, so maybe by the time I actually land in NC, they’ll be a couple left for Catherine and Buddy Not making any promises though