Not that I’ve tried making all the other chocolate chip cookies in the world but sometimes you come across one that is so good that it brings your search to an abrupt end. These cookies, aptly called award winning soft chocolate cookies, are some of the first that I’ve tried baking and I plan to bake them for the rest of my life. OK, that’s quite the commitment but you know what I mean. Slightly crisp outside and soft inside with lots of chocolate chips and walnuts, they’re just the best!
I baked a batch this past weekend, initially to welcome Mojo Jojo to The Sam and Gibb Show, and then it kinda turned into the RT Cookie Feeding Program. I was only too happy to ration and pack them because this recipe makes a huge batch (depends on how big you drop them but I made around 70 cookies!) and having them lie around the house would be very bad news for my thighs. Besides, cookies this good are meant to be shared.
The only changes I’ve made are slightly reducing the amount of sugar and adding a little bit of salt. To make the best ever soft chocolate chip cookies, you’ll need:
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 t baking soda
2 cups softened butter
1 cup tightly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 boxes 3.4 oz. instant vanilla pudding mix
2 t vanilla extract
1/4 t salt
4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups walnuts
1. Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature. Toast the walnuts. You can skip this part I guess but why would you want to? I find that toasted nuts are so much more flavorful. Just pop them in the oven, even a toaster oven in batches, and keep them in there until they turn brown and aromatic. Just make sure to keep an eye on them, they start to burn very quickly once they’re done. Set aside.
2. In a big bowl, cream the softened butter and the sugars. This step is important, it will make a world of difference in your end product. When you cream something, you’re incorporating air into it so that your end product would be light in texture. In this case, you’re also trying to turn the butter and sugar into the most homogenous mixture possible. This means you have to whisk like a madwoman. You can also invest in an electric hand mixer (they’re really not that expensive) and make your life easier. I did! I started with everything in the bowl already but you can start with creaming the butter first and then gradually adding the sugars.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula from time to time and cream until the mixer creates ridges in the mixture and it turns pale in color. It should look a little something like this:
3. And now, for the secret ingredient – instant vanilla pudding mix! Add into the creamed butter and beat on low until everything is mixed nicely. Stir in the eggs and vanilla extract.
4. Take a strainer and place it on top of the bowl to sift in the flour, baking soda and salt. Once everything is sifted, beat on low until everything is well-blended.
5. Add in the chocolate chips. Break up the toasted walnuts and add those in as well. Fold them all in with a spatula.
6. Drop onto an ungreased baking tray/cookie sheet by the spoonful. Bake them in an oven preheated to 175C/350F for 10-12 minutes, until the edges turn golden brown.
7. Cool on a baking rack before serving.
Yes, they are indeed!
Fun Food Fact: The first chocolate chip cookie was invented by Ruth Graves Wakefield in 1930 at the Toll House (ring a bell?) Inn Restaurant in Massachusetts. She later sold her recipe to Nestle.