The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Ever

I have a go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe from Klane's family which I can whip up from memory in about 15 minutes. It's like an old friend. I love those cookies. I have always loyally stood by that recipe as my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe of all time. It is really, really good.


These cookies? There is just something about them. I am tempted to cheat on my old cookie recipe with these bad boys. In fact, ever since I met these cookies a month ago, I haven't seen my old cookies even once. And I've made these new ones, oh... five times. When I first tried these I was floored by how good they were. They were soft, chewy and kind of fluffy. The first time I tried them, there was something unique about them that I couldn't quite put my finger on. They're incredible! I just might have a new favorite chocolate chip cookie. Just don't tell my old recipe. I don't want any hurt feelings.

Now, I have been known to cut corners and use substitutions on recipes. But you have to follow this one exactly in order for them to turn out so delightfully perfect. No substituting dark brown sugar for light, or semi-sweet chips for milk, or mixing things for a shorter time than called for. Follow the recipe exactly! They are amazing and addicting and you will be hooked.

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Ever

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
2 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 heaping cup of non-instant oatmeal
1 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or a handheld mixer, cream butter and sugar together for 3 full minutes, until mixture becomes light and fluffy. Mix in eggs and vanilla until combined. Put the oatmeal in a blender or food processor and pulse a few times. You're not making oat flour, you still want pieces of oats left. You just want most of the oat flakes broken up. Combine oats with dry ingredients in separate bowl. Beat dry ingredients into creamed mixture a third at a time with a wooden spoon. Stir in chips. Bake at 350 degrees for 9 to 10 mins. Take out a little early and let bake for a few minutes on pan before moving to a wire rack.

Recipe from a nice girl named Ashley Laidlaw.


Chicken Chili

Another soup recipe for the fall weather heading our way. This chili is very healthy but still delicious... especially topped with less-healthy additions like chips, cheese and sour cream! This recipe makes a very large batch, enough to feed ten people or so.

Chicken Chili

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
4 cups chopped yellow onion {2-3 onions}
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 bell peppers {I used 1 red, 1 green and 1 yellow}
2 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
½ tsp. dried oregano
1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce, finely diced {I couldn't find this, left it out}
2 tsp. kosher salt
2 (28 oz.) cans whole peeled tomatoes in puree, not drained
2 (15 oz.) cans beans, drained and rinsed {I used 1 can black and 1 can pinto beans}

Heat the olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions 5 minutes, or until tender and translucent. Add the garlic to the pot and sauté just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Mix in the chopped bell peppers, chili powder, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne, oregano, chipotle, and kosher salt. Cook 5 more minutes. Place the canned tomatoes in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse briefly so the tomatoes are cut to large chunks. {You could also break the tomatoes up with your fingers.} Add the tomatoes with the puree to the pot and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally.

Stir in the shredded chicken and the beans, and allow to simmer for another 20 minutes.

It's very healthy on it's own, but I like to serve it with chips, cheese and sour cream.

Recipe from Annie's Eats.


Levain Bakery Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Levain Bakery is a tiny cookie shop on the Upper West Side here in New York. They are famous for having the best chocolate chip cookies in NYC. Their cookies are gigantic and packed with chocolate chips and nuts, and they're served warm, soft and chewy. Levain also has a chocolate cookie with peanut butter chips. It is divine. Here is my copycat... also divine.

Levain Bakery Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

2 sticks softened unsalted butter
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup good cocoa powder
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 to 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or chunks
2 cups peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 350. In medium bowl, cream butter and sugar for a couple minutes until well blended and fluffy. Add eggs and beat until well-incorporated, then beat in cocoa powder. Mix in flour, salt and baking powder until just combined. Gently fold in remaining ingredients. Stir well with wooden spoon to mix.

Divide into 12 equal portions, about 4 oz each. These are GIANT cookies. Bake 16-20 minutes depending on how gooey you like the middles, taking care not to overbake. I made smaller, more regular sized cookies, and baked for 8-10 minutes instead.

Let cool on a rack and store what you don’t immediately eat, in an airtight container. To freshen them after a few days (if they last that long), give them a quick nuke in the microwave for 5-10 seconds.

Recipe adapted from a recipe found here.


Homemade Chili

In front of my grocery store there are giant crates of apples and pumpkins from local farms. Yesterday I got chilly and bundled up in a sweatshirt and thick socks. I bought a pair of boots. Fall is here! I love it. Since tomorrow is officially the first day of Fall, this seemed like the perfect time to make a pot of homemade chili and some cornbread. It was easy and delicious!

Homemade Chili

2 tsp oil
1 clove garlic, minced (buy jarred minced garlic)
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 pound ground beef
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (15 oz) can kidney beans
1 (15 oz) can pinto beans
1 Tbs chili powder
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in a large pot. Add onion and garlic and sautee until onion is clear and tender. Add ground beef and brown. Pour in the rest of the ingredients and stir to mix. Heat on low heat for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally.

Recipe adapted from several recipes on Allrecipes.com.

Sweet Cornbread

I've never made cornbread before and I couldn't believe how easy it was! And it turned out really delicious... with little to no effort. Amazing. Definitely making this again.

Sweet Cornbread

1 1/2 cup flour
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1 Tbs baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 Tbs butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350. Mix dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately, then whisk together to form a smooth batter. Pour in a greased 9x13 pan, bake for 30-35 minutes until edges are golden brown. Delicious served with honey butter!

Recipe from Kathryn at Wire Whisk.


Orange Dream Shakes

We've been into these shakes lately, we've made them quite a few times in the last couple weeks. They taste like an Orange Julius, or an Orange Dreamsicle. Hang onto those last fleeting moments of summer and make this. (Okay, summer is over, but you can still enjoy a nice smoothie.)

Orange Dream Shakes

3/4 cup vanilla ice cream
3-5 ice cubes
3/4-1 cup orange juice
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbs powdered sugar

Blend all ingredients until smooth, adding enough orange juice to create your preferred thickness. Serves 2.