A few years ago, the Mr. and I were on a little get-a-way. We stopped one afternoon at a cookie shop and had a great, fresh-baked cookie and some coffee. That little treat gave me a fabulous idea to do at home! I couldn't wait to get home with the kids and tell them about our new experience. We were going to have a "Cookie Bar" for dessert!
I made a basic cookie dough recipe and put out all kinds of mix-ins in seperate bowls. Everybody got a B.I.G. scoop of cookie dough and could stir in whatever their hearts desired! We baked delicious custom cookies!
I don't do this extremely often, but I do enjoy offering it occassionally as an option. It's especially fun if you're having friends over!
Basic Cookie Dough
1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
Cream butter and sugars together. Add eggs and vanilla and incorporate well. Mix in flour, soda, and salt and continue to mix well. Refigerate, if desired, until ready to use. I like my dough room temperature before we add our mix-ins.
white chocolate chips
peanut butter chips . . . ok, you get the picture! Any kind of chips!
chopped candy bars; snickers, chocolate bars, Andy's mints
M & M's
craisins or other dried fruit like cherries or apricots
broken pieces of graham crackers or other cookies (like the packaged kind!)
anything that you think would be fun, yummy, or unusual
Place your mix-in ingredients in individual bowls and place a teaspoon, or sometimes a 1/2 teaspoon in each bowl. All that does it kind of help with portion control!
When you look at the pictures, you'll see that how we did it this time isn't how I'm going to tell you to do it! Remember the saying, "Do as I say, not as I do!"
You'll need to pre-heat your oven to 350 and have your baking sheet ready.
Give each lucky cookie maker a small bowl and spoon. This actually works better if they can stir their ingredients in, not smooshing it with their hands. Here's why: when you squish it together with your hands, your dough gets too warm and your cookie doesn't hold it's shape and it melts all over your pan. OK -- not really ALL over, but you understand!
Bake the cookies for 8 minutes and then check. Some may be done -- others may need to go longer. It all depends on how much junk you've put in your dough!
Once they're perfectly cooked, let them remain on the cookie sheet for about 3 minutes (this allows the cookie to "set" before you attempt to move it to the cooling rack). If your friends can stand it, move the cookie to the cooling rack to cool a bit -- but if the temptation is too strong, go ahead and place that cookie on a plate and serve piping hot with a spoon or fork!
Truthfully, that's exactly how we do it! Patience is NOT our virtue!