I don’t throw around the word “genius” lightly. And I’d certainly never apply it to myself. (OK, maybe I did, once.) But my friend Amanda Bergman has taken a shine to my chocolate chip cookie recipe—seriously, judging by the frequency of her posting cookie pictures on Facebook, she’s probably made more of them than I have. The best part? This is the same friend who first hired me to write for Weight Watchers. And now she’s made my recipe her own, in a most ingenious way. I loved it so much, I asked her to write about it…
I am more than a little obsessed with food. I like to eat it, cook it, bake it, talk about it, take pictures of it, share it with people. I love the whole experience of preparing, serving and consuming edibles of all kinds. Remind you of someone else? Yes, I thought so. Hi Debbie!
A few years ago, someone (my sister, maybe?) suggested buying the Jacques Torres French Kiss cookie mix. I bought a few boxes, one for myself and the rest to give to assorted teachers as holiday gifts. I made my own batch one afternoon and was BLOWN AWAY. These cookies were magical, better than any other cookie I’d ever had. Ever. They were buttery, salty, chocolaty, chewy perfection. What was the secret? I had no idea. What I can tell you is that I had to buy more boxes of mix in the end because I used the others myself before I could give them as gifts. They were even better than the freshly baked ones I was eventually able to try from the Jacques Torres store in Chelsea Market.
Fast forward to a year or so ago when I finally got around to making Debbie’s recipe for The Best Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies in the Entire World. Based on her description, they seemed like they’d be very much like the French Kiss cookies I’d enjoyed to excess that fateful holiday season. So I followed the recipe, and somehow managed to avoid eating all the raw dough, and even somehow managed to avoid eating them while still so molten hot they would have obliterated the surface of my tongue.
From the first bite, I knew. These were the only cookies I would ever need to bake again. For friends, family, coworkers, bake sales, teacher gifts, first dates, celebrations, sad days, good days, any day. They are amazing every time. And I make them often. My coworkers love me. My bathroom scale…not so much.
Today I decided on a whim to plop balls of cookie dough in cupcake liners, the same way I’ve made single-serving brownies before. The scoops of dough were more generous in the muffin tin—I instead of two dozen regular cookies, I got 18 “cupcakes” this time (although I did eat some of the raw dough). And I baked them for closer to 22 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through. I kept a close eye on them and made sure to remove them just as the edges were browning and the insides were still a bit underdone.
Result: success! The sunken centers are perfect for holding a little scoop of ice cream, or a small dollop of whipped cream, or a spoonful of Nutella or peanut butter. Or your favorite frosting. Or forming the base for Strawberry ShortCookieCupcakes:
Because why stop at biscuits when you can use CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE CUPCAKES? Let’s be real here.
I think I might do this once a week or so: try some new variation on her recipe and share the results. I’m thinking orange-chocolate-chip (with dried orange peel), cinnamon (with ground cinnamon and maybe some cinnamon chips?), crunchy peanut with Spanish peanuts, Nutella-stuffed cookiecupcakes…