Un-chocolate chip cookies

Okay, you all should know I’m a little weird by now, right? You’ve all figured that out? Well, one of the ways in which I’m weird is that I’ve wondered for years now what chocolate chip cookies would taste like without chocolate chips. (Yes, really.) For years, I’ve tried to eat chocolate chip cookies getting a bite without chocolate chip, just to see what it tasted like. I usually fail.

Today, seeing as how I was in the mood to bake and didn’t have chocolate chippits around anyway, I decided to experiment. (Cue thunder and lightning.)

I found a recipe called Baseball Tollhouse Cookies in a book Marc’s mom had given me, originally by Marcy Goldman in the book “The Best of Better Baking.com”. (Recipe below.) It was the only chocolate chip cookie recipe I had that was both 1) easily available, and 2) vetted by someone I trust. So I decided to use that one.

Now, this was a true experiment for me. The dough — a fairly standard cookie dough, as far as I could tell — was quite tasty. But I had no idea how the lack of chocolate chips would affect baking: would they need longer or shorter baking times? Do the chocolate chips add moisture to the dough? I had no idea. But if there’s one thing everyone should have learned by now, it’s that even near-certain failure is only a minor impediment in my experiments. (Repeat after me: Experience is what you get right after you needed it.)

In the end, the dough produced 21 gigantic cookies. (What do you expect with 3 tablespoons of dough per cookie?!?) They’re flat and chewy and delicious. And gigantic. Baking time in my oven is about 12 minutes, and they may be a touch underdone, despite the golden-browning of the edges. But I like them chewy and a touch underdone, so that’s all good in my book.

So now I have an answer to the age-old question, “What do chocolate chip cookies taste like without the chocolate chips?” Answer: “Chewy, sweet, and all-around wonderful.” (Though maybe next time I’ll make them a bit smaller. *grin*)

(Recipe behind the cut.)

Baseball Tollhouse Cookies
As found in A Collection of Dessert Recipes, by the West Island Cake Club
Originally by Marcy Goldman in The Best of Better Baking.com

1 cup unsalted butter — melted
1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
3/8 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
2 cups plus 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
3 cups chocolate chips (omitted from Julie’s recipe)

Blend everything together in order given. Let batter chill for 20-30 minutes (or refrigerate for up to three days).

Preheat oven to 375 F. Double two baking sheets (one inside the other) and line the top sheet with parchment.

Remove lumps (about 3 tbsp) of dough. Using wet hands, round the lumps into big balls. Place on cookie sheet, leaving ample space between each ball of dough.

Bake until cookies are just buffed and set (12-14 minutes). Allow cookies to sit on baking sheet about 10 minutes before removing.

Makes about 1 1/2 dozen cookies.

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