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!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Cookie Recipe #95 - Tropical Gardens Cookies

These soft cookies are an orange-flavored sugar cookie with lots of mini chunks of chocolate sprinkled throughout and rolled in sugar for extra sweetness.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened, 1/2 cup shortening, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 egg, 1 tablespoon freshly grated orange peel, 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup orange juice, 2 cups (12-ounce pkg) mini chocolate chips, raw sugar.

Instructions: In large mixing bowl, beat butter, shortening, 1 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add egg and orange peel; blend well. Stir together flour, baking soda, and salt; add alternately with orange juice to butter mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover; refrigerate dough about 1 hour or until firm enough to handle.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll in granulated sugar (I used raw sugar). Place on ungreased baking sheet; flatten by crisscrossing with tines of fork. Bake 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool slightly on baking sheets before transferring to cooling racks.

Makes about 7 dozen cookies.

"Hershey's Chocolate Lover's Cookbook" published by Brimar Publishing, Inc. Montreal, Canada, 1993.

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