Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Warm out of the oven melt in your mouth chocolate chip cookies :)

Who doesn’t love warm out of the oven chocolate chip cookies with a tall glass of cold milk? Whether your mom made them from scratch or sliced and baked from a Toll House tube, it seems everyone has a memory of coming home from school and smelling chocolate chip cookies baking. Every once in a while I love to surprise my children with the scrumptious smell of baking cookies as they enter our home after a long day at school. Many years ago, I tried to convert a favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe to whole grain. The mouth watering smell was easily duplicated but the taste was more like chocolate chips stuck in a slice of not very good whole wheat bread. I remember being so excited that I was baking something so healthy for my family, but after one taste I was feeling defeated. This experiment was long before I owned a wheat grinder, and I had used store purchased whole wheat flour. That is never a good idea. Since that time I have experimented with a variety of grains. This is my favorite whole grain recipe for chocolate chip cookies.

The dumbed down kid version:

1 ½ cups shortening
1 ½ cups brown sugar
¾ cup white sugar
3 eggs
3 tsp vanilla
¾ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp baking soda
1 ½ cups hard white wheat flour
3 ½ cups spelt flour
1 ½ cups milk chocolate chips

Cream together shortening and sugars. Add eggs and vanilla and blend well. Whisk together dry ingredients and mix with wet ingredients. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

My favorite chewy version:

Decrease hard white wheat flour to 1 cup, spelt flour to 2 cups, and chocolate chips to 1 cup. Add 3 cups oats and 1 cup chopped nuts.

Did you know that the chocolate chip cookie has only been around since about 1934? According to Wikipedia, there are two conflicting stories about how the cookie came about. Both involve Ruth Wakefield the owner of Toll House Inn, a popular restaurant in Massachusetts at the time. One version states that she put chunks of chocolate in a batch of sugar cookies hoping for it to melt as it baked, and the other states the chocolate accidentally fell into the dough while she was mixing and because of frugality on the part of the head chef at the time, he encouraged her to bake the cookies instead of tossing the dough as she had planned. Regardless of the origins of their discovery, chocolate chip cookies are fantastically delicious.


cathy said...

These look awesome! I don't know why, but I'm afraid of spelt. Do you grind your own spelt? I'll have to give it a try.

Alison said...

Kitchen Kneads has spelt. I actually bought a 50 pound bag and grind it myself. Spelt has a milder wheat flavor than regular wheat, and so it can be substituted more easily for white flour. However, it doesn’t absorb the liquid quite the same, and so I have found that I need to increase the amount of spelt flour. One cookbook said when using spelt substitute 1 for 1 with white flour and then let the batter sit overnight, but I don’t have that much patience.