Many, many years ago, my mother-in-law gave me a handful of recipe cards as a gift for Christmas. On each card was a tried and true family recipe.
Isn't that a great gift idea for a new daughter-in-law? And yes, I'm taking notes for the future when I have daughters-in-law!
One of the recipes was from Aunt Jane (hi, Aunt Jane!). The first time I read through the recipe I thought when in the world would I ever make that many cookies?
And then I had children.
Remember, this recipe is for a LARGE batch of cookies!
Here we go:
6 cups shortening (one three pound can of Crisco, or three pounds of butter - I use butter)
12 teaspoons vanilla
6 cups white sugar (about 3 pounds)
3 cups brown sugar
12 eggs (yes, a dozen)
14 cups all-purpose flour (about 5 pounds)
6 teaspoons salt
8 teaspoon baking soda
12 ounce bag mini chocolate chips
You need a BIG bowl to mix these in. I have a 12 quart stainless steel bowl I use when I make applesauce, and it works pretty well. You could also use a stock pot, if you have one that's big enough. Or (perish the thought!) cut the recipe in half so it fits in the bowls you do have.
First things first. Measure the dry ingredients into a large bowl (a different one) and stir them together.
Break the eggs into another bowl. If you beat them slightly, you'll appreciate it later.
Open the chocolate chip bag and have it ready.
If you're using butter, let it soften first.
Now you're ready.
In the largest big bowl, mix the shortening or butter, the sugars and vanilla. Mix until smooth.
I tried using a hand-held mixer once. No go.
Now I use my (clean) hands. Yes, just get in there and let your fingers do the walking!
Squeeze and mix until you have a smooth mess of sweet goodness.
Add the eggs and keep mixing until it's smooth again.
And the flour mixture and keep going.
Okay, somewhere along in here you can switch to a sturdy spoon for mixing. Your hands will be getting tired anyway :)
Finally, add the chocolate chips and mix until they're evenly distributed.
Now that you have a humongous bowl of dough, what do you do with it?
Well, you could have a marathon baking session, or you can do what I do. I roll them into logs, wrap them in wax paper, and freeze them.
This batch makes about fourteen 12-inch logs, plus another 4 dozen cookies that I had to bake to keep my family from complaining.
When you're ready to bake some cookies for a quick dessert or late-night snack, pull one of the logs out of the freezer. Just slice as many 1/4" rounds as you need, and bake. 10-12 minutes at 350° is about right.
Anyone ready for a dozen fresh, hot cookies?