Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Cookie

What we think, or what we know, or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence. 
The only consequence is what we do.
  - John Ruskin

I have a few seriously irrational fears.  Some of the fears stem from terrifying reoccurring dreams which have plagued me since childhood the others are just irrational. Mountain sports scare me - totally irrational. 70 year old people ski - I am a fit 20 something, skiing should not intimidate me, but it does.

I don't like to go fast. Nope - slow and steady is my game. This is completely opposite from  my J, we are very different people - he can also eat his weight in cookies, I can't.

Skiing has never appealed to me, it actually scares me to even think about it. A handful of years ago I tried to ski and crashed on the first run, my body will never recover from that fall. I am mentally trying to overcome the fear that settled deep into my being from the experience. I am not one to live in the past, I am moving on, I moved on.

I overcame my snow fear this weekend on a ski trip to Mt. Bachelor, Oregon. This is one hell of a big deal in my little book.

See we go on ski trips, J wants to move back to a simple mountain town. I must get with snow program, he wants skiing to be part of his life and I cannot be scared for the rest of my days. Nearly all my friends get out there, play and enjoy the snow and I am not one to sit on the side lines regardless of my speed or abilities, I want to go play!

I did it. I survived two days of snowboarding, loved it, no broken body parts, no tears, humbled. I crashed, tumbled, slid into little kids, got passed by even smaller kids, fell getting off the chair lift every time, face planted off the chair lift in front of J, went home sore and tired.

I comforted my sore body with homemade chocolate chip cookies and beer. Totally worth it.

I like goals and accomplishments even more. Snow sports were on my "must do" list, I had to do it, it is done. I have several other goals that include physical feats that I yearn to tick off. Life is about striving balance and I do not feel that achieving these physical adventures without pushing the limits in all aspects of my life would leave me satisfied. I strive to be well rounded, not everyone wants to talk about outdoor adventures, sometimes even I want to geek out about baking bread and the best chocolate chip cookie recipe.  I can tell you that I find satisfaction in cookies as well as the latest epic ride.

Meet my new favorite cookie - the chocolate chip cookie - we are friends. I like them BIG, I only need one, you may need more, the size is engineered (did I really admit that I engineered something... gag) for textural differences, crispy on the outside with a chewy center, the few flakes of salt provide an unusual and welcomed zing.

I challenge you to do something you have been wanting to do, something that scares something that will be satisfying. Tell me about it and reward yourself with cookies because life is too short to be afraid and to pass up cookies. I know all to well about fear and passing up cookies - just do it already!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Source: The New York Times

2 cups minus 2 tablespoons
(8 1/2 ounces) cake flour
1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract
1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate disks, at least 60 percent cacao content
Sea salt.

1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.

2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them. Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours.

3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Set aside.

4. Scoop 6 3 1/2-ounce mounds of dough (the size of generous golf balls) onto baking sheet, making sure to turn horizontally any chocolate pieces that are poking up; it will make for a more attractive cookie. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown but still soft, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day.

Yield: 1 1/2 dozen 5-inch cookies.


  1. Some vision issues prevented downhill, but I have enjoyed cross country in my day. It is beautiful when it is just you and your group out there. Enjoy you will be OK and do great!

  2. OH and the cookies look wonderful.

  3. I have never been able to make my cookies look perfect. THESE look PERFECT!