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Chocolate Chip Cookie Day

"C is for Cookie!
That's good enough for me!"

~ Cookie Monster, Sesame Street, 1972

Does the smell of chocolate chip cookies baking fill you with nostalgia? The chocolate chip cookie is a drop cookie that originated in the United States in the 1930s. American chefs Ruth Graves Wakefield and Sue Brides in 1938 invented the recipe at the Toll House Inn, in Whitman, Massachusetts. According to cookie history, they had been serving a thin butterscotch nut cookie with ice cream, but decided to try something new and added chopped up bits from a Nestlé semi-sweet chocolate bar into the cookie. Wakefield gave Nestle the recipe for her cookies and was paid with a lifetime supply of chocolate from the company! Artisan and designer chocolate chip cookie franchises became popular in the late 1970s and 1980s with many brands competing for the top cookie spot. In the 1980s it was especially popular for people to try to reverse engineer the "secret recipes" of many brands, including the California based Mrs. Field's chocolate chip cookie, a secret recipe that supposedly has never been divulged! Whatever the case, with a few simple ingredients and a glass a milk, you're all set, or for a calorie free tartan version, all "sett"! 🥛 🍪

The chocolate chip cookie was invented by Ruth Graves Wakefield. She owned the Toll House Inn, in WhitmanMassachusetts, a very popular restaurant that featured home cooking in the 1930s.  The1938 edition of her cookbook, Toll House Tried and True Recipes was the first to include the recipe "Toll House Chocolate Crunch Cookie" which rapidly became a favorite cookie in American homes.

The Milk and Cookies tartan, by designer Carol A.L. Martin, contains all the colors of this favorite treat, including special hues with the names of "Chocolate" and "Baker's Chocolate."

The Chocolate Chip Cookie even has an urban legend associated with it!  


Following is the amusing "The Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookie"  story as circulated on the internet starting around 1996.

My daughter & I had just finished a salad at Neiman-Marcus Cafe in Dallas & decided to have a small dessert. Because our family are such cookie lovers, we decided to try the "Neiman-Marcus Cookie". It was so excellent that I asked if they would give me the recipe and they said with a small frown, "I'm afraid not." Well, I said, would you let me buy the recipe? With a cute smile, she said, "Yes." I asked how much, and she responded, "Two fifty." I said with approval, just add it to my tab. 

Thirty days later, I received my VISA statement from Neiman-Marcus and it was $285.00. I looked again and I remembered I had only spent $9.95 for two salads and about $20.00 for a scarf. As I glanced at the bottom of the statement, it said, "Cookie Recipe - $250.00." Boy, was I upset!! I called Neiman's Accounting Dept. and told them the waitress said it was "two fifty," and I did not realize she meant $250.00 for a cookie recipe. I asked them to take back the recipe and reduce my bill and they said they were sorry, but because all the recipes were this expensive so not just everyone could duplicate any of our bakery recipes....the bill would stand. I waited, thinking of how I could get even or even try and get any of my money back. 

I just said, "Okay, you folks got my $250.00 and now I'm going to have $250.00 worth of fun." I told her that I was going to see to it that every cookie lover will have a $250.00 cookie recipe from Neiman-Marcus for nothing. She replied, "I wish you wouldn't do this." I said, "I'm sorry but this is the only way I feel I could get even," and I will. 

So, here it is, and please pass it to someone else or run a few copies.... I paid for it; now you can have it for free. (Recipe may be halved): 

2 cups butter 
4 cups flour 
2 tsp. soda 
2 cups sugar 
5 cups blended oatmeal** 
24 oz. chocolate chips 
2 cups brown sugar 
1 tsp. salt 
1 8 oz. Hershey Bar (grated) 
4 eggs 
2 tsp. baking powder 
3 cups chopped nuts (your choice) 
2 tsp. vanilla 

Cream the butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla; mix together with flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder, and soda. Add chocolate chips, Hershey Bar and nuts. Roll into balls and place two inches apart on a cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes at 375 degrees. Makes 112 cookies. 

** measure oatmeal and blend in a blender to a fine powder. 

Though every bag of chocolate chips usually contains a classic recipe for cookies (and you can always try the $250 recipe here), click the picture for another variant on a "best ever" chocolate cookie, using brown sugar and cornstarch as secret ingredients - from Sally's Baking Addiction.

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