Recipe - Chocolate Chip Cookies

[Original post published December 2010] It has been a long while since I have baked cookies. However, I didn't realize how long it has been until Duc mentioned I hadn't made chocolate chip cookies for him before. I believe on more than one occasion during our relationship, I had boasted that I make damn good cookies and here I was, withholding them from him. I suppose it's because they get swiped up immediately after I make them that I haven't dedicated time to make more. They are eaten too quickly! Case in point: after my first batch of these to photograph, I made a second by request of my brother. I'm going to put my money on the fact that these will always be soft even after a few days (if they last that long) and are not too sugary. There's a trick to that which I'll share below. Oh also, I need a new hand mixer. My years-old one finally threw in the towel toward the end of my mixing this dough. Luckily, I'm handy enough with chopsticks to finish the job!

Step 1: Ingredients (yields 4 dozen cookies)
  • 1 cup butter, softened by room temperature
  • 1 cup white cane sugar
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, loose
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsps vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsps hot water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups chocolate chips, semisweet
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

Step 2: Creaming ingredients
My instruction above says to let the butter soften to room temperature. This is important if you want soft cookies. Melted butter will result in hard cookies because the chemical bonds change in the ingredient based on how the solid is handled. Room temperature butter produces soft cookies! Place it with the sugars in a large bowl and cream together until smooth. Add eggs one by one afterward and then vanilla extract.

Step 3: Making dough
Preheat oven to 350°F. Dissolve baking soda in hot water (helps activate it in the dough), and add to the main mixture. Then add salt, chocolate chips, and flour. Mix well. If you want some of the chips to be seen on the outside (like the finished product picture in this post), save a handful outside of the dough. Otherwise, the flour will cover up all chips. Roll into 1" balls onto a baking sheet. If the dough is too soft, feel free to refrigerate it covered prior to rolling into balls.

Step 4: Finishing
If you wanted the chocolate chips to show on the outside, use your reserved chips now to dot the dough balls all around. Bake 8-10 minutes until golden brown. Cool and enjoy!

Photography by Minerva Thai and Duc Duong.