I once made chocolate truffles to give to work colleagues at Christmas (they were sinful - the truffles not the colleagues - well, not that I'm aware of, you never know what people are like behind closed doors). Proper presentation boxes and everything! I would certainly do it again if I had the time BUT...conversely, although the idea is that you're making the truffles to show the person you're giving them to that you care (but not quite enough to part with your cash and buy them something), you spend a huge amount of time labouring over the things and then give those you love some tat you picked up at Macy's that you really have no idea if they actually need let alone want. Oddly, if I gave my husband a box of handmade truffles, lovingly made by my fair hands, I'd almost feel like I was copping out if I know that he wants the latest Madden. Surely the truffles would be the better gift?
I should say right now that I could probably give the hubby truffles and he'd be perfectly happy with them. But then he loves chocolate.
Anyway, back to the cookies.
My mother-in-law is a great baker and every year she also makes Christmas cookies. Trays and trays and trays of great mountains of cookies that she sells (at far too low a price for the amount of blood, sweat and tears that go into them - obviously not literally though, ew). These aren't just Christmas themed cookies though (i.e. sugar cookies in various Christmassy shapes), her cookies range from Hungarian cookies to coconut cookies, caramel dipped cookies to the contentious pinoli cookies (don't ask), biscotti to the all-time American favourite: the soft-batch chocolate chip cookie.
|Grandma's little elf|
I always wanted to be this type of a mum, so on our recent visit to the US my mother-in-law said I could have her soft-batch chocolate chip recipe. True to her word she emailed me the recipe to make in time for the hubby's birthday so I whipped up a batch on Sunday. These cookies are just perfect little things, chewy and chocolatey and remind you just a little bit of being a kid. Now because she sells the cookies it wouldn't be fair for me to publish the recipe (I'm sorry!), but if I've learnt anything the secret to a good soft-batch cookie is brown sugar. That's what gives it the chewy texture and makes it crazy good. I played around with the recipe a little as it called for a HUGE amount of chocolate (when I say "played" I mean I forgot to pick up extra chocolate so had to make do with the amount I had). I also learnt that when you ask for a cookie recipe from a lady who makes cookies in quantities to sell, you should probably check how much the recipe makes. The cookies just kept coming. It was like they were replicating. I reckon I ended up with around 60 in total from just 1 batch. "Great!" you may think, except that I don't keep sweet things in the house for a reason and I now can't stop eating the cookies. No really, I can't stop. I somehow convinced myself yesterday that cookies could most definitely fall within the "breakfast" category so ate about 10 before 10.30am. Not conducive to losing the Christmas podge.
As for other people's views, hubster loved them, the new work colleagues loved them, the parents loved them (although my father seemed quintessentially English and confused about them when he tried the first cookie - Me: "Dad, try a soft-batch cookie. What do you think?" Dad: "They taste good but they're a bit soft"?!) and as for Pose, well....
Damn it, I meant to exercise tonight but instead I spent 2 hours writing about cookies. How ironic is that?