Failed Cookie Experiment

big_chocolate_chip_cookiesI have a confession to make-I am not great at making cookies and hence don’t make them very often. They seem easy enough; Mix dry together, mix wet together, then combine and spoon on cookie sheet. But oh no, its never that easy. (Or at least not for me!)

People tell you either A) Mix ingredients together like crazy or B) Don’t mix them TOO much.  So which is it?

Last night, I thought it would be cool to mix this recipe with peanut butter. The cookie dough looked awesome in my mixer, all chunky and thick. Girls in the throes of the ‘time of the month’ would have been tempted to eat a scoop of it. So I was feeling all confident when they were baking in my oven. Unfortunately, our oven light has burned out so I can’t see what sort of monstrosities are brewing during the cooking process.

Once the timer went off, the cookies looked like toast and I don’t mean that in a metaphorical sense. I mean it literally!

peanut-butter-toast1

They looked like slabs of bread with peanut butter on top and they were were crumbs all over the place! Of course, they were tasty, but still, the presentation was all wrong!

Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to make the perfect soft and chewy chocolate chip cookie? Or some good recipes?

Picture-Cookies: http://www.foodstuffs.com/itemimages/big_Chocolate_Chip_Cookies.jpg

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14 thoughts on “Failed Cookie Experiment

  1. aandjblog

    I have the same problem with you, i suck at making anything in the kitchen. A. is great in the kitchen. I really wish he would cook more.

    On the bright side, anything with PB rocks!

  2. hannah78 Post author

    Aandjblog-Well, actually I consider myself to be quite adept in the kitchen, but things like cookies still allude me. Is there some ‘magic’ ingredient I’m missing? I do agree with you, however, about peanut butter..Hmmm..:)

  3. hannah78 Post author

    Germturtle-Yes, taste trumps appearance, but it would be nice to have both.:)
    Robin-O.k. Well thought I would ask anyways. :)

  4. XUP

    You have to be a special kind of person to bake successfully. I’m not that person. Cooking is easy and fun. Baking is arduous and exacting and so easy to screw up. There are many fine bakeries around. You could buy cookies there and maybe slip them into your oven to warm up for a few minutes if you want to impress friends and family

  5. Lost Artist

    Oh I wish I could help. but seriosuly, the only cookie recipe I know is the one on the back of the Tollhouse chocolate chips. I’m trying to remember and I think those may be the only from-scratch cookies I’ve ever made. Cheers to you for experimenting!

  6. hannah78 Post author

    XUP-I may just end up buying cookies and heating them up as you suggested. LOL. I’m stubborn though, and will continue to try and solve the cookie mystery! Wish me luck! :)
    Lost Artist-Thanks! Experimenting is fun..even if you just end up with large overheated pieces of toast! LOL

  7. melanger

    Thanks for the visit. Definitely try the lemon meringue cake – it is delicious. I actually sometimes struggle with cookies, too. If you want soft and chewy cookies (my favourite as well!), I have a few ‘tips’. 1) Always scoop out the cookie dough on to baking trays with a small ice cream scoop first to make them uniform. 2) Then chill the dough for about 30 minutes to an hour to harden it up. 3) Then pop it in a pre-heated oven and bake for always less time than the recipe recommends (e.g. if they say 12-15 minutes, check around 10 minutes). The cookies will always harden more when they are out of the oven. When I lived in America, I used the recipes on the back of Toll House packages before and they have been successful this way. Give that a go and let me know how they turn out!

  8. Kevin

    OK, here’s the secret to making THE GREATEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD!! Was that too much? Anyway, the secret is to make the dough…and then put it in the fridge for at least 24 hours. Yep, no instant gratification in the recipe. This time alone in the cold darkness of your refridgideezer allows the butter and eggs to infuse throughout the dough and give you THE GREATEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD!!

    For proof, from the NYT this past summer: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/dining/09chip.html and the recipe for THE GREATEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD!! http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/dining/091crex.html

    I’ve made these cookies and I don’t lie about baking. Oh, and don’t forget to sprinkle them with the sea salt. So very important.

  9. JoLee

    I wish I had some good cookie advice for you but I’m not much of a baker. I’ll eat the hell out of some baked goods that other people make though.

  10. olivia

    LOL Hannah … :-) As long as they taste good!

    I love baking and cooking and experimenting in general. I too have one of the best chocolate chip cookie recipes — a lot of people have other versions of the best it seems … ;-) One of the important steps to great cookies is to take them out of the oven when they still look soft as melanger noted above. As for the mixing too much vs not too much … when it comes to cookies, I’ve never really heard that — more to do w/ muffins and pancakes (don’t mix too much) … beating the butter and sugar really well will give a more cake-y cookie … not thin and crisp. Plus taking it out of the oven when it’s still soft. I like the cake-y cookie so that’s what I do. Also, if you’re adding additional ingredients (not on the recipe list) you have to account for the extra moisture or dryness you’re adding and subtract from something similar. Your cookies might have needed less butter w/ the addition of the oil in the peanut butter for instance, and so the combination of the two made the dough too ‘loose’ when it warmed up in the oven.

  11. hannah78 Post author

    LiLu-LOL. Well with some practice, I’m sure you’ll be a great cook. (Or at least a smaller disaster)
    Mélanger-I looked for our ice cream scoop but couldn’t find it, so I just guessed, which obviously didn’t work! LOL. Your suggestions to chill them and use the Tollhouse recipe are good. I will definitely try it!
    Kevin-24 hours?? But I want cookies now!! *kidding* If they turn out looking quasi-normal, then I can wait. I will look at those articles you posted. Thanks!
    JoLee-That’s o.k. I need people like you to sample my food and give me an opinion. :)
    Olivia-Yeah, I should take the ingredients more into account with making cookies, but I made a few sans peanut butter and they all looked the same. I will try and not overcook them next time. :) Thanks!

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