I have nibbled my way through many chocolate chip cookies in my day. The lure of crunchy edges, chewy and gooey insides, with just enough dough to hold it all together. Where did this all begin? Ruth Wakefield, owner of the Toll House Inn in Whitman, Mass., created the chocolate chip cookie in 1930. Wakefield was making a cookie that called for nuts when she suddenly discovered she had none. So, what did she do? Ruth substituted chopped semisweet chocolate to only later add the nuts back into her recipe. That combination created the cookies we know and love today.
Going back to the traditional recipe, my cookie isn’t fancy with expensive chocolate or overnight resting of dough. These cookies are twice-baked, sliced oblong in shape, which gives them a dry, crunchy cookie texture, just like a biscotti. Finishing with a faint crunch of sea salt, the final result is an absolutely perfect cookie for dunking in milk or coffee. Dream on!
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons espresso powder or instant coffee
1 teaspoon chocolate extract – optional
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup mini, semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Line a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking sheet with foil or parchment paper
Using the large bowl from your stand-up mixer, beat shortening and butter on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar, granulated sugar, baking soda, salt and instant coffee. Beat mixture until combined, scraping the sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in the eggs and vanilla until combined. Slowly add flour, stir in chocolate chips and nuts if desired.
Press dough evenly into a foil or parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkling a sugar-salt mixture over the top. Bake 22-25 minutes until golden brown and center is set.
Cool in pan for 1 hour on a wire rack. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Holding securely to the foil/parchment paper, gently remove cookies from pan and place on a cutting board, leaving cookies on the lining. Cut crosswise into 9×1/2-inch slices. Place slices cut side down, about 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes or until cut edges are crispy. To make them crisper, after the final 6 to 8 minutes bake time, leave in the oven with oven door open, until desired crispness. Carefully transfer cookies to wire rack. Cool.
Hope you enjoy.
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