cookies

How Are You?

How is everyone doing? I hope this post finds you healthy and happy. We’re doing just fine over here in the Zottola household. We are healthy, we have food, a roof over our heads, and we’ve been able to connect with our families and church family via technology. God. is. good.

I’m just popping in to share some photos and thoughts from our life lately. 

Melissa and Doug Reusable stickers

Some fun activities we’ve been doing while hanging out at home with Sadie girl:

  • Playing with play dough
  • Using re-usable stickers
  • Coloring and drawing
  • Baking and cooking
  • Taking walks around the neighborhood
  • Reading books
  • Chasing each other around the house (though this probably should stop because Sadie fell yesterday and almost bit through her lip… it was quite the bloody mess!!)
  • Playing with toys
  • Watching sign language videos
  • Filming vlogs
  • FaceTiming with friends and family

I baked double chocolate cookies with a bar of Lindt dark chocolate and they have been such a treat. I based the recipe off of this one. Also lots of sourdough action happening around here.

Baking with Lindt chocolate

Sourdough bread in dutch oven

We’ve been staying positive and praying a lot. Like many others, Jimmy is currently out of work. We are making the best of it by trusting that God will take care of the situation, giving thanks for our health, and enjoying the extra time together as a family ❤

Sadie is always a source of joy for us, but especially so lately! She’s just so innocent and sweet and a huge blessing in our lives. Seeing her smile just lights up my day. 

Father and daughter playing in teepee

Mom and daughter drawing on easel by Melissa and Doug

Last but not least, vlogging has been a fun distraction and a way to document this unique time in our lives. I’ve never vlogged on a Sunday before, so it was a fun little project while we hung out at home this weekend!

 

How are you doing?

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies I’ve Ever Baked

I know, this post has quite a lofty title to live up to, but I think it does!

The best chewy chocolate chip cookies recipe

I’m continually tweaking recipes. I spent about six months perfecting my malted milk chocolate chip cookies, honed my butter browning skills to create my mint dark chocolate chip cookie recipe, and won’t tell you how many batches of black bean soup I made before I felt confident enough to post that recipe.

All this to say, baking and cooking science fascinates me. Different flours have varying protein contents, adding air in increments to butter and sugar mixtures changes the texture of a cookie, smoking meat with different types of wood chips totally changes the flavor, and various spices bring out different flavor notes in a soup.

The best chewy chocolate chip cookies recipe

The ratio of white sugar to brown sugar, types of flour, and amount of butter and vanilla extract are what makes these chocolate chip cookies the best I’ve ever baked.

I like a soft, chewy chocolate chip cookie, so here was my approach:
-2 sticks of butter (more butter results in a thin cookie, and less makes a more “cakey” cookie)
-More brown sugar than granulated (more granulated than brown makes a crisp cookie, and less sugar in general makes a light and airy cookie)
-Bread flour helps to make the cookies chewy
-Cake flour helps to make the cookies have a soft texture
-Two teaspoons of vanilla extract highlights the sugars in the cookies

Okay, enough science. Let’s get to the recipe!

The best chewy chocolate chip cookies recipe

Ingredients
1 cup bread flour
1 1/4 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions
1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk flours, baking soda, and salt.
2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugars until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until fully combined.
3. Stir in flour mixture until just combined.
4. Stir in chocolate chips.
5. Refrigerate dough for 1 hour.
6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
7. Drop tablespoon-sized balls of dough about 2 inches apart onto baking sheets and baking for 8 to 10 minutes, or until cookies are golden but still soft.
8. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool and enjoy!

What’s your ultimate chocolate chip cookie like?