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  1. Wednesday, September 5

    Crispy Crunch Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Okay, so there’s a bakery-cafe called Le Boulanger in my town that has these chocolate chip cookies filled with crisped rice. The cookies are darn good and have a great texture. You may recall last spring I was experimenting with crisped rice in cookies, but I wasn’t very happy with the result. I’m here today to proclaim that I have cracked the crispy code!

    When my sister-in-law was first telling me about the Milk Bar cookies and mentioned that they had cornflakes in them, I started asking all kinds of questions with the crisped rice cookies in mind. Sure enough, the cereal was baked in butter and sugar before being put in the dough. I couldn’t wait to get home and try making the corn flake crunch with crisped rice and trying them in cookies. I had a sneaking suspicion this was just the little trick I needed to get it right.

    I was right – it was just the trick I was looking for! My sister and I agree hands down that the crisped rice in these cookies has great texture, nothing like that first batch I tried. Also, I used my Perfect Cookie recipe instead of the NY Times cookie recipe, which also greatly helped with the outcome.

    The end result? A seriously awesome cookie that pretty much comes out perfectly every time. They’re chewy, they’re crispy, they’re buttery, they’re chocolatey…they’re pretty much heaven.

    You’re welcome.

    Crispy Crunch Chocolate Chip Cookies
     
    From Jane Maynard, This Week for Dinner
    Author:
    Recipe type: Dessert
    Ingredients
    • 2 sticks butter, softened to room temperature
    • 1 cup packed brown sugar
    • 6 tablespoons sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1½ teaspoons vanilla
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 cup flour
    • 2¼ cups oats
    • 1½ cups crispy crunch
    • 1 package (10-12 oz) MINI semi-sweet chocolate chips (the mini chips help with distribution and texture)
    Instructions
    1. Cream butter and sugars at medium speed for 2-3 minutes. Add eggs and beat at medium-high speed for 5-7 minutes. Beat in vanilla, baking soda, and salt just until mixed. Add flour and mix at low speed until just blended. Stir in oats, crispy crunch and chocolate chips.
    2. Make cookie balls (appx 2 tablespoons in size) and arrange on a cookie sheet lined with wax or parchment paper. Pat cookies down flat-ish, cover with plastic wrap and freeze or refrigerated for at least one hour.
    3. Preheat oven to 350 F.
    4. Bake cookies ~14 minutes, rotating the pan at the 7 minute mark. Cookies should be brown on the edges and starting to brown in the center when you take them out. Let sit on pan a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack…or eating! They are good warm but these cookies are also excellent cold, which is saying a lot coming from the fresh-baked-warm-cookie addict that I am.
    5. Freeze or refrigerate remaining dough that doesn’t get cooked.


  2. Friday, June 17

    Chocolate Chip Pretzel Cookie Bars

    How about a little treat for the weekend? I saw a Food & Wine recipe for Chocolate Chip Pretzel Cookie Bars on lovely Maria’s food blog and knew I had to give them a try. I’m a sucker for anything with a salty-sweet flavor combination.

    I was a little curious about what the texture of the pretzels would be like in something baked. When they were hot out of the oven, the pretzels were a little soft, but once the bars sat for a bit they got crunchier. My favorite way to eat them: after they’ve cooled, zap your bar in the microwave for 7-10 seconds. The bars are a little warm and the pretzels still crunchy. YUM!

    I had a meeting with some of my Federated Media peeps this week and sent them back to the office with a few cookie bars. Within the hour I had an email from one of the VPs saying “mmmmmm” and a tweet from my DailyBuzz Moms team about how much they loved the bars. I really can’t take any credit. It’s a straight up Food & Wine recipe, which I didn’t even discover myself (thanks Maria!)…but everyone agrees, they are DELISH! Enjoy!

    Chocolate Chip Pretzel Cookie Bars
     
    From Food & Wine via Two Peas and Their Pod, with my personal notes
    Author:
    Recipe type: Dessert
    Ingredients
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • 1½ (6 ounces) sticks unsalted butter, softened (Jane note: my butter was salted, everything came out fine)
    • 1 cup light brown sugar
    • ½ cup sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • One 12-ounce bag bittersweet chocolate chips
    • 1½ cups mini pretzels, coarsely chopped (Jane note: it’s WAY easier to just break the pretzels into small pieces with your hands rather than chopping with a knife. Also, I probably put in about 1¼ cups instead of 1½ cups.)
    Instructions
    1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray a 9-by-13-inch pan with cooking spray.
    2. In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt. (Jane note: I skipped this step because I’m lazy. Once the eggs and vanilla were in, I beat in the baking soda and salt, then the flour. And I’m sure I broke some baking rules doing it, but everything came out great and I had one less bowl and whisk to wash!) Using a mixer, beat the butter with both sugars at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute (Jane note: actually, let it go a few minutes). Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract. On low, beat in the dry ingredients, just until incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips and pretzel pieces.
    3. Spread the batter evenly in the pan. Press the batter down with a spatula. Bake for 30 minutes, until golden brown. The middle might be a little gooey but that is ok, the bars will set up. (Jane note: Mine were DEFINITELY done at 30 minutes – in fact, if I had been paying attention, I might have taken them out a few minutes earlier than that.) Transfer the pan to a rack and let cool completely. (Jane note: Yup, I didn’t listen and ate one hot out of the oven. And, in this case, they are better after they’ve cooled a bit. Although, I can’t say it was exactly torture eating one before they cooled…still delicious!)
    4. Cut and eat!


  3. Wednesday, January 31

    Chocolate Chip Amish Puff Cookies

    chocolate chip amish puff cookies from @janemaynard

    Chocolate Chip Amish Puff Cookies
     
    Author:
    Recipe type: Dessert
    Ingredients
    • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
    • ½ teaspoon baking powder
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • ½ cup softened unsalted butter
    • ½ cup light brown sugar
    • ¼ cup white sugar
    • 1 large egg
    • 1 cup chocolate chips
    • ¼ cup sugar
    • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon (Jane note – I used way less cinnamon than this, maybe ½ – 1 tsp)
    Instructions
    1. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt into a bowl and set aside.
    2. In a stand mixer, cream butter and sugars on medium speed for several minutes until light and fluffy. Add the egg and mix until combined. Add the flour mixture, and mix on low speed just until combined. Cover dough and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Stir in the chocolate chips. (Jane note – I stirred in the chocolate chips BEFORE I chilled the dough.)
    3. Combine cinnamon and sugar in a bowl. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line several cookies sheets with parchment paper. Roll tablespoon-sized balls of dough in the cinnamon sugar and place on cookie sheets about 2 inches apart.
    4. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through, until golden brown. Cool cookie sheets on wire racks.