Hurray! It’s time for one of my favorite culinary OCD attacks of the year. I make ten kinds of Christmas cookies every year. I make the same ten kinds every year, and I make many, many dozens of each one. I realized that if I make ten dozen of each one, then I make 1,200 individual cookies in the last week or so before Christmas. I wonder if there’s any help for my condition? I guess that’s why they call it Obsessive Cookie Disorder.
People have obviously suggested through the many years that I’ve been doing this, that I change the ones I make, or rotate different ones into the mix. I deal with this suggestion by offering to stop making their personal favorite cookie this year. This is inevitably met with horror and dismay, “I didn’t mean MY favorite cookie!” But of course, that’s the problem….EVERY cookie is someone’s favorite, or obviously I wouldn’t make them in the first place! How in the world would I choose which loved one should go without? That makes me start talking about ‘Sophie’s Choice’ and William Styron and then, to distract me from a meandering book conversation, that then leads to a conversation about adding more kinds. Really, don’t you think I may have other things to do beside making, maybe 11, or 17, or 30 different kinds of cookies at this time of year? Therefore I’ve decided to stop at ten kinds, and I’m sticking with it…..at least for this year.
I’m going to roll ‘em out (pun intended) starting now. You already know about one of them, peanut- butter chocolate chip, from a previous posting. Here are the beloved Deluxe Chocolate Chip Pecans….they come from a Nestle recipe book I sent away for in my 20’s and, if memory serves, was completely FREE. I’ve occasionally thought that if the house catches fire, I should make a b-line to snatch it….
Deluxe Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies
Makes about 4 ½ dozen cookies
2 ¾ cups all purpose flour
1 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups butter, softened
1 ½ cups light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs
4 cups Semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Beat butter, sugar and vanilla in large mixing bowl until creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour, baking soda and salt and mix well. Stir in chocolate chips and pecans. Drop by a small scoop or tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until they are as brown as you like them. (I used to prefer them underdone, and now I like them quite crispy, due perhaps, to years of teasing by my friend Pooh) Remove to a wire rack to cool completely, if you can keep your hands off ‘em long enough….they are divine.