Expressions of Love

I love Christmas. Its coming up quick and I couldn’t be more excited. The thing is I love to give presents. Its how I show I love people. I give them things. Specifically homemade food. That’s how my family has always been. We are never out of food and always have room for one more at the table. 

In the course of all this baking I’ve been able to share with all the people I like. And also share with people who really deserve a thank you. Its pretty common for me to take cookies to the shop that works on my car. Or family and friends’ workplaces. Treats make everyone smile. Especially when they are a surprise. Or if they accommodate a certain dietary restriction. Vegans, gluten-free folks, diabetics, etc. Today is my friend Molly’s birthday. So of course I baked. Well I would have anyway but this just means I actually have someone to give cookies to. Being a fellow vegan I couldn’t resist the irony of livestock shaped cookies. Here we have AV/Garrick tester sugar cookies. We have pigs, cows, two lovely buffalo and even two elusive unicorns.

I also made some chocolate chip cookies. I used to be known for my amazing chocolate chip cookies. My secret was the recipe on the back of the tollhouse package and using milk chocolate chips. But since becoming vegan I haven’t really found a chocolate chip recipe I loved. Well that and I had a few other cookie recipes that seemed a little more enticing. There was a ppk thread a while back about the ‘perfect chocolate chip cookie’ article in the New York Times. The recipe called for two different flours and resting the dough for 24 hours. I couldn’t wait 24 hours but I did make it 12. 

Time: 45 minutes (for 1 6-cookie batch), plus at least 24 hours’ chilling

 

2 cups minus 2 tablespoons (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour

1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt

2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) EB

1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar

1/4 cups soymilk

2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract

1 1/4 pounds semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Sea salt.

 

1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.

2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream EB and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add soy milk mixing well. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them. Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours.

3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Set aside.

4. Scoop rounded tablespoon sized balls onto baking sheet, flatten slightly. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown but still soft, 8-11 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day. Eat warm, with a big napkin.

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