7 Quick Takes Friday!

7 Quick Takes Friday! March 16, 2012

This marks my fourth post this week, and I’m doing quick takes on time! I’m very proud of myself. My house is a disaster, it’s true, and last week it was clean, but we all have shifting priorities from time to time, right?

Yesterday was a momentous occasion. At long last, I finally found the most perfect, the most divine, the most awesome chocolate chip cookie recipe. 
I’m sort of a cookie-oholic. Not so much when it comes to eating them (all right fine that’s a blatant lie), more like when it comes to finding and making the absolute perfect chocolate chip cookie. I have very specific criteria for what a chocolate chip cookie should be. It should be fluffy and soft…extremely fluffy and soft. It should not crunch, crisp, or in any way require more than the bare minimum of jaw pressure to bite into. It should be loaded with chocolate chips. None of this pansy two-chocolate-chips-a-cookie nonsense. No, a true chocolate chip cookie should be a conglomeration of chocolate chips bound together with fluffy, soft dough. No chocolate chip cookie should ever, and I do mean EVER, contain any kind of nut; it distracts from the chocolate and adds unacceptable crunch. 
But the final and most absolute rule for chocolate chip cookies is, of course, about the chocolate chips themselves. 
It breaks my heart to see Perrier and San Pellegrino on this list. Sigh.
Look, I could get all noble and tell you that I boycott Nestle because they use aborted fetal cells to test their products, because they produce food using genetically modified ingredients (sorry for the Greenpeace link…I now feel dirty), or because of their unethical business practices, but the bitter truth is that I hated Nestle before it was cool to hate Nestle, because Nestle chocolate is disgusting. 
Right? It’s so gross. Their chocolate chips do not taste like chocolate. They are foul and vile. Their chocolate candies are all contaminated with said non-chocolate chocolate, and thus are inedible. I can bite into a chocolate chip cookie and tell instantly if it has been infiltrated by Nestle, and I will always put that cookie down and immediately gargle with acid.
Every time somebody comes up with a new reason to boycott Nestle I feel triumphant. Yeah, I think to myself. We knew there had to be something fundamentally evil about a company that could so irrevocably destroy chocolate, didn’t we, self? 
Most unfortunately, I married into a family for whom the only chocolate chip is a Nestle chocolate chip. (My MIL has now abandoned that particular oversight in her otherwise flawless cooking practices, thanks to Nestle using dead babies for their products and all.) When we were first married I was still questing for THE chocolate-chip cookie, and I sent the Ogre to the store for chocolate chips and he came home with Nestle. 
I flipping hit the roof. There are few subjects on which I will brook no discussion, but this is probably the biggest. (What can I say? I’m serious about chocolate.) He made one brief attempt to argue that his mother makes the best chocolate chip cookies in the world and she always uses Nestle, but then I shot fire out of my eyeballs and he went back to the store for different chocolate chips.  
Guittard milk chocolate chips are my chocolate chips of choice. (Did I mention that chocolate chip cookies should always be made with milk chocolate chips? They should. Who wants a semi-sweet cookie? Not me, thanks.)
Guittard uses a higher percentage of cocoa butter, so their chips are fat and pillowy and so yum. Unfortunately it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find Guittard as we move all over creation, so I’ve had to make do with some substitutes. 
Ghiradelli milk chocolate chips are an acceptable substitute, but I find them to be too expensive unless they’re on sale. The best substitute I’ve found are Hershey’s mini-kisses, which are also larger than the average chocolate chip. I also really like the flavor of Hershey’s milk chocolate. I mean, they’re not Guittard, but they’re a passable substitute.     
 Okay, I’m sorry. The point is, this cookie recipe is the one I have been searching for my whole life. I thought I found a good one last year, but it gave me inconsistent results. This one is perfect. Perfectly perfect. Don’t be wigged out about the cornstarch! I promise you can’t taste it. 
I only made a few minor changes. I mixed the cookies in the traditional way (creaming butter and sugar first, then eggs, then vanilla, then stirring in already-whisked dry ingredients) and I pretty much quadrupled the chocolate chips because I have a chocolate problem. Otherwise, I stuck to the recipe*. And then died of happiness. So did my kids, when I totally stopped monitoring their cookie intake while I wigged out about how perfect these cookies were. As a direct result, they had cookies for dinner and stomach-aches this morning. 
Seriously, where’s my trophy already?
Baby Center just emailed me the vital information that at 11 weeks, my baby is now the size of a fig. 
I really wish they’d stop comparing babies to food. They always do that! It’s always food! Don’t they know they’re emailing pregnant women, for crap’s sake? I read that and think, “Mmmmm, figs. Figs and prosciutto. Figs with goat cheese. Fig jam. Fig and pancetta gnocchi.” 
And then I realize that Baby Center just told me that my child is the size of a fig and I immediately started fantasizing about eating figs. And then I feel like Cronus, and no one wants to feel like that. 
Ave Maria University is putting on As You Like It. The Ogre and I are getting a babysitter and going. I’m really excited. But look, these kids are awesome, because you want to see something really cool?
A trailer! For a play! Brilliant. These are the reasons I love living in a university town. In some weird way, it means I never have to leave college. Which is good, because college is.the.best.
Enjoy your weekend! Go and see Jen for more quick takes!

*I realize that I’m updating a post almost entirely about cookies with an update about cookies, but I’m shameless. On my cookie-quest, I’ve found that chilling the dough for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator before baking results in prettier, fluffier cookies. Yesterday I did some chilled and some unchilled, and the chilled ones were unquestionably fluffier and more delicious-looking. But they were all delicious, so if you just can’t wait to get those suckers in the oven, I’m not gonna blame you. I am, of course, assuming that everyone reading this post is immediately going to bake the best cookies ever, right? Right? 

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