Apologies for the expanse of the time that has commenced the past month without writing. But good news! Cobalt and I are officially moved to Los Angeles, California where we will live out the next chapter of our lives together; this time with friends (we’re splitting a home with another couple to save monies)! Good news because I can now routinely post recipes again. And my new kitchen is absolutely gorgeous and has fantastic lighting for picture taking! (If I could do a backflip, here’s where I would insert it.)
I also will—more than likely—be making delicious meals with my roommate Katherine and am happy to share these!
In the meantime, here is a fail-safe recipe for chocolate chip cookies, more famously called Neiman Marcus. Apparently the recipe used to be secret and cost a bit of money to buy. But there’s really no secret about it. The only difference between regular chocolate chip cookies and these is espresso powder.
Before Cobalt and I moved we hosted a Going Away party for our friends (sounds weird to host our own but it was super last minute!). I wanted to make some easy and delicious refreshments, so I mixed up a Pineapple Peach Mojito Salad (sans rum), homemade rolls with ham and cheese, chips and homemade salsa, ginger ale lemonade punch and chocolate chip cookies.
This recipe for the cookies I used also for my brother’s wedding back in 2010. He wanted me to make them as party favors so I think I made 25 dozen? Anyway, they turned out so delicious, chewy and flavorful; I bagged up three for each guest and was seriously surprised by how many cookies were left over!
Needless to say, there’s a reason it’s been four years since I’ve tasted this cookie ;-)
Because I knew this recipe was do-able in large amounts, I knew I could make enough for 50 people for our party. The recipe yields 1 dozen but—though I reduced the sugar to 3/4 cup—I ended up getting 2 dozen out of it by portioning the dough into smaller pieces.
I also chilled the dough in the freezer in log shapes that:
1) it wouldn’t spread so much while baking
2) it would stay fresh while two pans were in the oven at a time and
3) it would be easily portion-able.
Then, I literally cut the log o’dough down the middle length-wise and then cut somewhat uniform-shaped cubes perpendicularly to the first cut. I didn’t shape the dough after that–I just placed the pieces on an ungreased cookie sheet as is.
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3 TBS white sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour (or 1 cup AP and 3/4 cup wheat)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 TBS cinnamon (optional)
- 1 1/2 tsp instant espresso or coffee powder
- 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 375F if using room temperature dough; 350F if chilled dough.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla.
- Whisk all dry ingredients into a separate medium bowl: flour, salt, coffee, baking powder and baking soda.
- Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing well but not over-mixing!
- When the flour is almost incorporated, add the chocolate chips and mix the rest of the way, using a spatula to scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl of any leftover flour.
- *NOTE: At this point, you may chill the dough --> I found that chilling it produces a more stable cookie that won’t spread too flat. Also (somehow), chilling the dough prevents the balls from sticking to the cookie sheet. I wrapped approximately 2 cups of dough into plastic wrap and frozen them for at least 30 minutes before baking them.*
- Either roll the dough into balls (if not chilled) or scoop with a spoon onto a *greased* cookie sheet. If chilled, cut the dough into cubes and place on an *ungreased* cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.
- Bake for 10 minutes for fresh dough; 20 minutes for chilled dough.
- Take pan out of the oven and let cookies cool at least 5 minutes on the pan before transferring them to a cooling rack (otherwise they'll fall apart when you try to scoop them off). Also, allow the pan to cool completely before loading it with another round of dough.
- Store cooled cookies in an airtight container for 3-5 days; otherwise freeze in an airtight container or zip bags for at least a month.
- I reduced the sugar to 3/4 cup, using only brown sugar and these were perfect!
- Next time I’d like to make these cookies with chopped up Chocolate Mint, Orange Zest, different candy chips or craisins!