Until now, I’ve had little luck in replicating her success, even as the same recipe she used calls out tauntingly from every package of Toll House morsels I buy. And I buy quite a few.
Although I can’t be sure which of the following factors was responsible for my recent breakthrough, it probably had a lot to do with a certain extra presence in the kitchen:
- My wife baked with me. Even though she likes to steal batter at every step in the process, I have to admit: she’s got the gift of mix. It probably helps that she doesn’t over-measure the ingredients, a mistake that I, as a member of the “more is awesome” school of baking, tend to make.
- I defrosted the (unsalted) butter in the microwave. Not only do I now realize that butter is infinitely better than margarine in baking, I’m convinced that the consistency of the butter (i.e. softened, not melted) is the key.
- We used small spoonfuls. Again, it was my wife who urged caution when I began dropping ice-cream-scoop sized portions onto the cookie sheet.
The result: some damn fine cookies. Maybe not as good at my aunt’s, but as close as I’m ever going to get.
Ahem… close as we’re ever going to get.