Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Chocolate chip, pistachio & sea salt cookies

If there's one thing I've learned over the past year or so, it's this: the food cravings of a pregnant woman should be taken very seriously.

At current count, four (four!) of my closest friends are pregnant with their first child.  Moreover, three more of them have a 1-year old, so pregnancy wasn't that long ago.  A few years ago, it seemed like e'erybody and their brother was getting married (I should've taken a picture of our save-the-date collection on the fridge); now it's babies.  On my calendar, there are four due dates in less than four months.  Whew!

While the ladies are different in many ways, one thing is consistent: they've all wanted children of their own for as long as I can remember, and I couldn't be more excited for them!  You know who you are, and you should know that I think you're going to be fantastic mothers.

Things I'm also excited about: to meet each gal's mini me (I can't even handle the potential cuteness), to watch how the new families grow and develop, and to secure my spot as the cool aunt who buys the most awesome (and occasionally messy) toys :)

But, like I said, all of the women are amazing and amazingly different.  Much like the foods they've been craving during their pregnancies.

For example, my coworker craved pickles -- like, had to have them or heads would roll..  Another friend had an unparalleled appetite for pasta; regardless of shape, there was a serving of it on her nightly dinner plate.  One lady wanted her carbs in a different form: pancakes and cereal, all.the.time.  And my girl on the West Coast can't stomach the idea of ground beef but is on a serious steak bender.  Go figure!

It's another one of these moms-to-be, and her very specific cravings, whom I can thank for these cookies.  A few weeks ago, Val and her husband invited us over for Halloween, and I asked what we could bring.  Without any hesitation, she spelled it out for me: cookies, chocolate, and pistachios.  "Consider it done," I replied.

And this brings me to two more things I learned: We all could use more pistachios in our lives, and I should've added pistachios to chocolate chip cookies years ago.

Classic Toll House cookies are studded with barely sweet and crunchy nuts and sprinkled with a few flakes of sea salt on top.  The smell of the cookies baking is familiar and comforting, and the taste is just as wonderful with a little something extra.  It's surprising how one small addition can really elevate a tried and true favorite.

Plus, I love the flecks of bright green.  Perfect for this time of year.  Come to think of it, these cookies would be fabulous at Chri-.  Please don't say it's too early.

With so many friends indulging whims and impulses, the planner in me is dying for a little certainty.  Like the cravings of a pregnant woman, my Type A need for a schedule and certainty involving cookies should be taken very, very seriously.

One year ago: Orange balsamic slow cooker roast
Two years ago: Black bean burgers
Three years ago: Turkey & cranberry sauce panini
Four years ago: Cheese ravioli with apples & toasted walnuts
Five years ago: Oatmeal raisin cookies

Chocolate Chip, Pistachio & Sea Salt Cookies
(adapted slightly from Two Peas & Their Pod's recipe)
-makes 2 1/2 dozen (roughly 30 cookies)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, plus more for sprinkling
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup chopped pistachios, shells removed
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.  In a large bowl, whisk together flour, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, baking powder and soda.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and sugars on medium high speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.  Add egg and vanilla and beat 2 more minutes, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.  Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add flour mixture, mixing until no white streaks remain.  Using a spatula or wooden spoon, fold in chopped nuts and chocolate chips.

Using a cookie scoop, drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto lined cookie sheets about 2 inches apart from one another.  Sprinkle dough balls with sea salt.  Bake cookies for 12 minutes or until edges are turning golden and set.  Place baking sheet on wire rack and allow cookies to cool for 2 minutes before transferring from parchment to wire rack to cool completely.

Cookies can be stored in airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.

1 comment:

  1. Katy,

    These sound incredible! What a good combo.