Andrew Dornenburg Culinary Artest, Chef, Writer
By Stacy Poulos © 2003

From the book BECOMING A CHEF - 2nd edition by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page
Mrs. D's Chocolate Chip Cookies
Marcel Desaulniers
James Beard Award-winning chef and author
The Trellis Restaurant
Williamsburg, Virginia
Marcel Desaulniers writes of his mother's cookie recipe: "As a toddler, I teethed on this cookie (along with her fudge). As time passed, it greeted me after school and brought my family together around the kitchen table. When I was in the service, this cookie brought me joy in Viet Nam and put a smile on the faces of my Marine buddies desperate for a taste of home. With a cookie like this from Mom, I don't know why anyone needs apple pie."
Makes 2 dozen 4-inch cookies
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound unsalted butter, cut into 1-ounce pieces
2 cups tightly packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
24 ounces chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 300 degrees.

1. In a sifter combine the flour, baking soda and salt. Sift onto a large piece of wax paper and set aside until needed.

2. Place the butter and dark brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle. (If a table-model electric mixer is not available, this dough may be mixed by hand using a stiff rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. Make sure the butter is at room temperature.) Beat on medium for 4 minutes until soft.

3. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add the eggs, dark rum, and vanilla extract and beat on medium for 1 minute until combined. Scrape down the bowl.

4. Operate the mixer on low while gradually adding the sifted dry ingredients until incorporated, about 1 minute.

5. Add the chocolate chips and mix on low for 30 seconds. Remove the bowl from the mixer and use a rubber spatula to finish mixing the dough until thoroughly combined.
Using 2 large heaping tablespoons of dough for each cookie (just shy of 3 ounces), portion 6 cookies, evenly spaced, onto each of 4 nonstick baking sheets.

6. Place the baking sheets on the top and center racks of the oven and bake for 28 to 30 minutes until dry to the touch. Rotate the cookies from top to center about halfway through the baking time (at this time also turn each sheet 180 degrees).

7. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow to cool at room temperature on the baking sheets for 30 minutes. Store the cookies in a tightly-sealed plastic container until ready to serve.

Note: Mrs. D and her family love crisp cookies. If your preference is for a softer cookie, bake them for 20 minutes at 325 degrees. These cookies will keep forever, or close to it, when held at room temperature in a tightly sealed plastic container. For long-term storage, up to several weeks, the cookies may be frozen. Freeze in a tightly sealed plastic container to prevent dehydration and freezer odor.


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