Cookies are not my favorite treat, until they are fresh out of the oven. I can’t resist them right off the pan. But I generally find most homemade cookies less than tasty, and here’s a few tips to make them better.
First, I don’t care for most home baked items because of the butter flavor. Having grown up with margarine, I can tell when someone uses real butter with a strong butter flavor. My solution: In the following cookie recipe I used half margarine and half butter flavored shortening. The shortening also improves the softness of the final product.
Second, I like soft cookies. My cookie eating experience diminishes when cooled cookies crack and crumbled with each bite. The combined trick here is that I replaced half of the butter with shortening. Butter has more water that evaporates during cooking, leaving a flat, dry cookie behind. Also, I found this recipe that includes vanilla pudding for adding softness. Then you just have to make sure and not overcook them. Every oven is different, I reduced the cook time and then checked them every two minutes to calibrate the cook time for my oven. If necessary, you could remove a few to let them cool and return the pan to the oven, doing that a few times to have samples of varying cook times to compare. If you cook them long enough to brown, they come out a little crispy.
I also used my new baking sheets, recommended by America’s Test Kitchen, but you have to subscribe to get the info. They test out products, ingredient comparison, and the perfect recipes for modern chefs.
Last I added a little health boost by replacing 1/2 cup of the flour with wheat germ. You can’t even notice the wheat germ. Next time I will replace a little more.
The verdict: No need to try another recipe, ever. Want the recipe? Here is the original recipe, and below is my modified version:
Ultimate Soft Chocolate-Chip Cookies
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup wheat germ
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 cup butter (or margarine), softened
- 1 cup shortening, butter flavored
- 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 2 (3.4 ounce) packages instant vanilla pudding mix
- 4 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- 2 cups chopped walnuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Sift together the flour and baking soda, set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. Beat in the instant pudding mix until blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Blend in the flour mixture. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Drop cookies by rounded spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven. Edges should be golden brown.