Baking with Aunt Debbi

As it turns out, my nephew has also inherited Mama’s “love of cooking” gene! We recently spent an afternoon together baking cookies in my kitchen. Ray wanted to bake sugar cookies. I wanted chocolate chip. We compromised and baked them both!

Baking Dark Chocolate and Pecan Cookies

We made the dough for the sugar cookies first. While the dough was chilling in the refrigerator we made and baked the chocolate chip cookies. Ray hasn’t learned to like pecans yet so we split the recipe and made half with pecans and half without.

Dark Chocolate and Pecan Cookies
Delicious with or without the pecans!
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups (12 ounces) dark chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans, optional
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Sift together flour, baking soda and salt.  Beat butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in a large bowl with hand mixer until creamy.  Add eggs; beat well. Gradually add flour mixture, beating well.  Stir in dark chocolate chips and pecans. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto lightly greased baking sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cool slightly, remove from baking sheet to wire rack.  Cool completely. Store cookies in a tightly sealed container. Makes about 5 dozen.
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Baking Dark Chocolate and Pecan Cookies

While the chocolate chip cookies cooled Ray and I rolled the sugar cookies into balls and then rolled them again in sugar. We used both raw sugar and granulated sugar. The sugar cookies are soft when warm straight out of the oven. They become crispy as they cool.

Buttery Sugar Cookies
The simplest cookie of them all! Delightfully crisp and buttery!
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
1 cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
Coarse sugar, for rolling
Beat together butter, sugar and salt in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes with a hand mixer.  Beat in egg and vanilla. Reduce speed to low, then mix in flour.  Halve dough and form each half into a disk, then wrap in waxed paper. Put each disk in a resealable plastic bag and chill until firm enough to roll into balls, about 1 hour.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. While oven heats, work with one piece of dough (keep remaining dough chilled). Roll 1 level teaspoon of dough into a ball, then roll in coarse sugar in a shallow bowl to coat completely. (If dough becomes too soft to roll easily into balls, quick-chill in the freezer or chill in the refrigerator.)  Place balls 2 inches apart on a baking sheet sprayed lightly with canola oil cooking spray. With the flat bottom of a glass, flatten balls into 2-inch rounds. Bake cookies, one sheet at a time, until bottoms are golden, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer with a metal spatula to wire racks to cool completely. Store cooled cookies in a tightly sealed container. Makes about 4 dozen.
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Baking Buttery Sugar Cookies

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