“The First Hundred Years are the Hardest”
Cookies and other kitchen triumphs and disasters…
LA can be a fascinating place to live. One can find all sorts of ways to go nuts. Sometimes one’s partner is responsible for volunteering her unsuspecting housemate to assist on a Wrap Party. Well… OK, you want quiches? OK, for how many? A hundred people? (Thud, as the unsuspecting housemate tries to do the math involved in a dozen quiches)
So…we baked the quiches. In relays. Went out to Trader Joes for wine (our budget was NOT lavish). We created Styrofoam balls covered with parsley and speared many, many shrimp on toothpicks for dipping.
This was very educational, and by the time we had the kitchen cleaned up, I was willing to admit it had been fun.
Word had been out for several years that the Coven stead of Lorraine Covenant liked to feed people and did it well. Other friends blabbed, too. When another friend was muttering about the lack of a “coffee and cakes” budget for a film, we asked how we could help? We could help. A few dozen cookies, sure. No problem.
Of course, they needed to be on the set at 6am. And, there were from 80 to 130 people raiding the goody table each day. Hummm.
We set up a schedule. After all, the shoot was to be over by Christmas.
We did twelve dozen cookies a day, 5-6 days weekly, adding in nut breads and other goodies as the holidays approached. We had a wonderful time. The gang recognized Cheryl’s station wagon and she had to hide the basket for our friend to keep the vultures out of it.
Then there was another show, and this time, the budget was better, but… our cookies were so much better. OK. Once more, into the kitchen dear friends.
How did we create these? Please remember, these are not diet friendly. Make ‘em smaller if you like, but watch the baking time, small means shorter times.
The original Recipe is from Ruth Wakefield’s Toll House “Tried and True” Recipes, 1943 edition. Our version came to be called “Hooker Cookies” in honor of the series of the same name.
Butter really is essential for the flavor. If you use salted butter, cut the amount of salt by half. Please use real Vanilla extract, not imitation.
2 cups butter
1 ½ cups brown sugar
1 ½ cup white sugar
2 tsp baking soda dissolved in
2 tsp hot water
4 ½ cups flour
2 tsp salt
1 lb chopped nuts
1 lb chocolate chips
2 tsp Vanilla extract
Cream the butter and the two sugars together. Beat the eggs until light and lemon colored then add them to the butter and sugar mixture. Add the dissolved baking soda to the first mixture. Mix the sale with the flour and add it to the butter mixture. This will be very stiff. Add in the nuts and chocolate chips.
Heat oven to 375®, drop by teaspoons onto a greased cookie sheet and bake for 10 – 12 minutes. Let cool and try to keep the ravening hordes out of them-at least until all of them are baked. This should make about 100 cookies.
Variations on the theme? Sure
Macadamia Nuts and white chocolate or carefully drained Maraschino cherries work well
Pecans and butterscotch chips are lovely.
Dark chocolate and hazelnuts are wonderful.
Almonds and candied ginger will work too, but chop the ginger very fine.