Friday, May 16, 2014

It's Friday! -Free Recipe Friday!

I have been wanting chocolate chip cookies all week long, so I decided that would be the -free recipe I would share: my chocolate chip cookie recipe. This is a slightly modified recipe from a cookbook my mom had when I was a kid/teenager. The recipe called for butter or vegetable shortening and we always used butter. But one time we didn't have butter or enough butter so I used Crisco shortening. They turned out better than they had with the butter! I've been making them with Crisco ever since although did try dairy-free margarine. It works, just not as good. My mom always used to mix the dough in a food processor and I didn't feel like having to clean the food processor afterwards one day, so I just did it by hand. Again, they turned out even better!

The tricky part to make these cookies dairy-free could be to find dairy-free chocolate chips. Most of the ones I've found in stores have milk in the ingredients, and unfortunately, my favourite ones, the President's Choice chocolate chips, now have "May contain milk" on the label. (I still eat them even though I really should avoid all potential traces.) I believe Camino is completely dairy-free, but don't quote me on that, as is Enjoy Life.

One more thing about this recipe: Pretty much everybody LOVES this recipe--when I make it. I have tried my best below to put in the details that I might be following that others don't when making the recipe, but that's still no guarantee. I once supervised my niece making them and they did not turn out the same.

So, here we go, today's Dairy-Free Recipe:

Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies
Preheat the oven to 350F-375F--the exact temperature will depend on your oven and elevation

1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, very well packed (I normally use golden brown, but did use the darker stuff in the past and they were just as good)
1 cup of Crisco shortening
(just a note here: you want the sugars to be a little more rather than a little less than the full measure, and the shortening a little less rather than a little more; it can make a big difference!)

2 large eggs
2 (overflowing) tsp vanilla

2 cups flour (I use Canadian all-purpose flour; you may need to use something other than all-purpose or adjust your amount if you are not in Canada)
1.5 tsp salt (original recipe called for 2 tsp, if you like them saltier)
1 tsp baking soda

1+ cups chocolate chips (original recipe calls for 2 cups)


In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugars and shortening VERY well. I use a fork for this until it is as blended as it can be.

Add the eggs and vanilla. Mix with the fork until creamy. And then mix a little more.

Sprinkle over top the flour, salt and baking soda. Mix with a mixing spoon until well blended.

Add the chocolate chips and mix again.

Drop onto ungreased cookie sheets. I make them large, about 2". The recipe usually makes about 25 cookies for me (well, it would be a couple more if dough didn't get eaten...).

Bake for 7-8 minutes. (You may need to play around with this. With one of my ovens, I baked them at 350 for 10 minutes and they were perfect. With my current oven, 8 minutes at 375 seems to work well, but I still have to play around a bit to get it just right. With the second batch, 8 minutes is actually too long for this oven.) I take them out when the edges are just starting to get golden and some peaks are showing signs of browning. They are, for all intents and purposes, undercooked, but not so undercooked that they will be gross. They will still continue cooking a bit as they sit on the cookie sheet.

 They look browner in this picture than I think they look in real life.

Let them cool completely on the cookie sheets. Do not remove to a wire rack. Because they are already a tad undercooked, let them keep cooking a bit without the browning!

If you prefer the harder cookie, by all means, cook longer. :)

Happy Victoria Day long weekend to the Canadians reading!

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