The Very Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Hello friends. I'm going to share something very special here today. I've debated with myself whether to share this recipe on here, because it is the definition of a family recipe, and there's something very special about how it's been handed down at least three generations.

But I've decided to share it. Partially because it's so wonderful, and partially's one of the few things I have been able to eat the past week (here is a list of things baby likes: cottage cheese, ramen, toast, oranges, anchovies, chocolate chip cookies...).

I know, I know, it's just chocolate chip cookies. How special can they be? And everyone has a recipe, right? Nestle prints it right on the back of the chocolate chip bag! Don't make that recipe, by the way. It's just...not right.

I know it's not right, because I have only one copy of this recipe, and occasionally, it goes wandering. I've lost it and refound it more times than I can count, and while I've always been lucky enough for it to come back, I've had to try other recipes in its absence.

And none can even start to compare! They spread, or they're too stiff. They're too molasses-y, or not enough. They're as sweet as a cup of hot chocolate (the fake kind), which I suppose some may like, but to me, that is not what a chocolate chip cookie should be.

A chocolate chip cookie should be a soft, thick, chewy experience that tastes sweet, but has just the smallest touch of salt to warm it, and whole wheat to give it substance. The chocolate should be an accent, not a focus (or else why not just make chocolate cookies? Nothing wrong with that, but pure chocolate is not the point of a chocolate chip I wrong?). Also, they should stay soft for days.

The body of these cookies is so good, I get people requesting I make them WITHOUT the chocolate chips! Now what does that tell you?

I probably sound like a terrible cookie snob. I'm sorry if I've offended other cherished recipes handed down from other cherished grandmas. But I think that if you try this recipe, you will become a cookie snob too. No more overly sweet mouthfuls with no substance, no more flavorless filler between chocolate chips. No more crispy, spread out messes.

Just soft, chewy perfection.

Thanks grandma. Happy holidays.

Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies (our favorite)

1 c shortening
1/2 c granulated sugar
1 c brown sugar, well packed
1 t vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/4 c flour (I like to do half regular and half whole wheat)
1 t soda
1 t salt
1/2 c chocolate chips (adjust to taste)
1 c chopped walnuts

Cream together shortening, sugars, vanilla, and eggs. Sift together flour, soda, and salt; add to creamed mixture. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 375 for 8 minutes (I like to cut it down to 6, but I like my cookies doughy, so adjust to taste).

Enjoy! Short recipe huh? They had to fit them all on index cards back in those days.


Vee said...


Kris Ngoei said...

Thanks for sharing this family treasure with all of us..... absolutely delicious!

And congrats for the pregnancy.... Ok, I know the thoughts about food all the time, right?

Chef Dennis said...

what a wonderful cookie recipe, and thank you so much for sharing it! I struggle sometime sharing recipes, but I want them to live on and be made and enjoyed by I do share them...I think you made the right decision! Your Grandmom has just become immortalized with this great recipe!

a. maren said...

aw thanks for the sweet comments everyone! i appreciate you dropping in.