We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Cookie Recipe #26 - Ayisha's Walnut Bites

While having lunch at Michael's in Mountain View, Ayisha explained how her favorite cookie is "a chocolate chip cookie without the chocolate chips, but with lots of walnuts". So, that's how today's cookie came about-I took my chocolate chip cookie recipe, subtracted the chocolate chips, added lots of chopped walnuts and topped each cookie with a half a walnut. The smile on Ayisha's face reflects what she thinks of the cookies.
Ingredients: 1 cup (2 sticks)butter, softened, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 2 1/4 cup flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts, 24 walnuts, cut in half.
Instructions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In large mixing bowl, beat sugar, add in both sugars and mix well. Drop in eggs and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. Sift flour, baking soda, and salt over mixture, then combine completely. By hand, mix in chopped walnuts. Drop by teaspoonful onto ungreased baking sheets. Place a half a walnut on top of each cookie and bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 8-9 minutes, until lightly browned.
Remove from oven and allow to cool on baking sheet for a minute or two before transfering to cooling racks.
Makes about 4 dozen nutty bites.
Cookies Rule!!!

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