“Hi! My name is Aditi, and I’m a chocoholic” – that would be my introduction, Hollywood-style, if I ever checked into rehab. ( Can we hear a chorus of “hi aditi” ???)
Ok so to tell you a little bit about myself- I’m 26 years old, my middle name spells L-A-Z-Y, and (as you already know) am extremely fond of all things chocolate. One thing that you don’t know, is that my best friend is a pastry chef-and a very generous one at that, which is how I get my regular chocolate fix! It is also the reason I have been lucky enough to sample some of the most decadent and experimental desserts found this side of the globe! (although I didn’t know this when I made friends with her 18 years ago, god promise)
But in all these years of eating chocolate cake by the kilo and putting on airs of a dessert gourmand (self-proclaimed ofcourse), I had never once tried my hand at creating anything in the kitchen. Until one Friday afternoon, when said best friend challenged me to bake a batch of cookies.
Now, challenges are not something I usually rise to, but this one would involve spending time at her professional kitchen, and the prospect of stealing a few macaroons whilst there, was too tempting to refuse!
The deal we made was that she would hand me a recipe and give me instructions, which I would then have to follow. My reward would be the box of cookies I’d get to take home, while hers would be a couple of hours of sadistic pleasure from watching me struggle. And this blog post.
So that’s how i found myself mixing, whisking, folding and rolling huge quantities of cookie dough under her expert supervision. Needless to say, baking is hard work, but besides being very precise with measurements and timing, it can be pretty fun. Or maybe it was because I was in the Le15 patisserie kitchen, which is my personal heaven!
Surprisingly, the cookies turned out very well, although my right arm is still sore from all the whisking. (baking tip #1: whisking for fifteen mins > 3 reps of bicep curls)
So for all the beginners reading this, here’s the recipe I followed: (It’s fool-proof i think, unless you reach for oven trays without mitts and you’re stuck nursing a second degree burn instead of the sweet fruits of your labour! )
2 cups flour--cos you can’t bake without flour
1 tsp baking soda --for the chemical reaction that makes the cookie rise
1 cup brown sugar --to give it a granular texture, and for the yummy caramelly flavour
½ cup castor sugar
1 cup butter – amul, cos it tastes of india
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 eggs -- if you want an eggless recipe, stop reading now. thank you very much for your time.
2 cups chocolate chips (plus another handful for later)
Makes : 20 cookies (a single days supply, for when I’m pms-ing)
Step1: Cut up the butter into cubes, then add both kinds of sugar and butter into a large mixing bowl. Use a whisk to mix it all together.
Step2: Add the eggs and vanilla essence to the above mixture, and whisk again until nice and smooth
Step 3: Sieve the flour once in a second bowl. Then add baking soda to the flour and dry whisk for 30 seconds.
Step 4: Start adding the flour to the first mixture in small batches, and keep whisking until your arm feels like its going to fall off! At this point, the dough should be soft and holding its own shape. Throw in the chocolate chips/white chocolate chips/walnuts/hazelnuts etc and mix it all up.
Step 5: Gather the entire mass of dough onto a sheet of cling film and wrap it tight. Put this into a freezer for atleast 30 mins to ‘rest’ (cos its tired from all the hard work its been doing, ofcourse!) *rolls eyes*
Step 6: Once you’ve taken the dough out of the freezer, divide it into about 20 tablespoon-sized blobs on a baking tray. Be sure to arrange them a few inches apart so that they don’t stick to each other while baking
Step 7: Put baking tray into a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees for about eight to ten mins
Step 8: Remember the handful of chocochips we kept aside? Now’s the time to munch on them, while humming a little happy tune.
Step 9: When the edges of cookies start to turn golden brown, remove from oven and set on a wire rack to cool . The “Yummiest chocolate chip cookies ever” are now ready for consumption.
Step 10: Indulge!!!