Friday, November 17, 2006

Mesquite Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup organic unsalted butter, room temperature (soft to the touch)
2 cups Alter Eco Organic Ground Cane Sugar (see recipe header for substitution ideas)
3 large eggs
3 teaspoons high-quality vanilla extract
1 teaspoon alum-free baking soda
1 teaspoon alum-free baking powder
3/4 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
2 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup mesquite flour
2 cups organic chocolate chips
2 cups organic rolled oats

Preheat oven to 375F.

In a medium bowl whisk together the dry ingredients; baking soda, baking powder, sea salt, pastry flour, and mesquite flour. Set aside.

In a big bowl or with an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugar until it lightens in color and has a fluffy, billowy consistency. Mix in the eggs one at a time, making sure each egg gets incorporated before adding the next. Add the vanilla and mix until it is incorporated.

Now you are going to add the flour mixture - the one you set aside earlier. Add the flour in about four waves, stirring a bit between additions until the flour is just incorporated. You could add all the flour at once, but it tends to explode up and out of the mixing bowl and all over me every time I do that. At this point you should have a moist, brown dough, uniform in color. Stir in the oats and chocolate chips by hand. Mix only until the oats and chips are evenly distributed throughout the dough.

Drop cookies onto cookie sheets. I like to make these cookies on the large size - and use about 2 tablespoons of dough for each one (an ice cream scoop comes in handy here if you want to get them all uniform in size). I think the dough to do onto the pans a little rough and raggy - I never roll the dough into balls or anything like that. I like the shapes of my cookies to have some personality. Bake at 375F for 10 minutes on the middle or upper rack. You don't want to over bake these cookies at all or they will really dry out. If anything underbake them just a bit - look for them to start to get golden on the bottoms and tops and them pull them out to cool.

Tip: If you don't want to bake off the cookies all at once - still drop any cookies you aren't going to immediately bake onto a plate or cookie sheet. Cover with plastic wrap, and place in the freezer for an hour or so. You can then throw these pre-made cookie dough balls into a freezer-quality plastic bag and they won't smush into each other. You can then just pop them in the oven at your leisure over the next couple weeks and have hot-out-of-the-oven treats.

Big Batch: 2-3 dozen med/large cookies.