Making a Perfect Cookie

Finding a cookie recipe that works for your family is like finding a religion that speaks to your soul. Growing up, we had a recipe that was our go-to for almost every Sunday. We loved that recipe so much, that my mom printed it in vinyl lettering and stuck it to the wall by our mixer! Every child in my family became a pro at making those cookies! Family bonds were baked and forged as we worked together to make cookies, and sometimes fist fights broke out over who got the last one.  Nothing said "home" to me more when I was at college than opening the front door to my parents' home and having the smell of fresh baked chocolate chip cookies hit me like a love wall when I visited on some weekends. 

I'm not going to share with you my perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe today. I feel like finding your cookie recipe is more like a spiritual journey that one must travel themselves to really come in tune with their baking chakra (located on the tongue, in case you weren't aware of it's existence). I know, I know, I'm being a little selfish! But, every tip I share with you today can be applied to virtually any Chocolate Chip (or whatever) Cookie recipe to improve it and help make them a little more perfect! I know because I have tested this process on a few different recipes! Trust me, just like you don't want your parents arranging a marriage for you, you don't want me to spoil your journey of finding Mr. Cookie Recipe.

The Tools:

-Standing Mixer with a WISK attachment
-Measuring cups/ spoons
-Metal Cookie Sheet
-Silicone baking mat
-Extra bowl
-Plate/ Large container with a lid  
-Cookie or Ice cream scoop

The Process:

1. Combine your flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Mix by hand and set aside

2. Cream your Butter and Shortening on high for 2 min. Add your brown sugar and white sugar into the bowl and mix on high for another 2 min.

3. Add in eggs and vanilla, then mix on high until JUST COMBINED! 

4. Hand mix in your chocolate chips. This will evenly distribute them without over mixing the dough.

5. Add flour mixture and mix until JUST COMBINED!! Only mix to the point where you don't see anymore flour spots. No more! No less! Just like excessive pestering will flatten a new relationship, over-mixing your dough will flatten your cookies and make them sad. 

6. Form dough into round balls. I like to use a cookie scoop for this so that there is minimal dough handling, but you may also use the ice cream scoop method. This tutorial from a random girl on the youtubes is very helpful!  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwNdQmWY664

7. Freeze or chill your dough for at least 20 min. This is to trick your dough into thinking you aren't interested anymore so that you can gain the upper hand. 20 good min in the freezer will remind your dough that you are the one in charge of this relationship! 

8. Set your baking rack to the second highest position in the oven. 

9. Place chilled dough balls on a cookie sheet that has a silicone baking mat on it. This will help heat distribute evenly, and make your cookies feel that you might actually be into them more than you initially let on. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-11 min.

10. Leave on baking sheet for 3 min before transferring to a cooling rack.

11. Immediately shove all of them into your mouth. 

Baking more than one batch at a time:

Like most baked goods, perfect cookies require diva-like attention and demand to be in the oven by themselves. *eye roll emoji* But, If I have to make a ton of cookies, and don't have a ton of time, I simply put another batch on the second to bottom rack. Once the higher-rack cookies have reached about 10 min, I take those ones out and move the other tray onto the higher rack and let those finish up baking for about 3 min. 

When to take your cookies out:

Like making out, the skill of knowing when your cookies are done only comes with practice and self discipline. The ideal time to take them out (in my opinion) is if you are barely seeing golden brown appear. Of course, I like my cookies slightly under baked because I believe that soft, slightly doughy cookies are of the gods. 

Once you take them out of the oven, leaving them on the rack for 3 min to ensure that they won't fall apart when you transfer them! 

Dough Consistency:

Your dough should not stick to your fingers when handling, and it shouldn't crumble or fall apart. If it's sticky, that means you don't have enough flour. If it's crumbly, that means you have too much flour. The Flour/ Fat Ratio is a fine line, my friends! 

 

Enjoy your perfect cookies! Try not to burn your mouth as you eat all of them strait out of the oven!