When I told the girls I thought I’d write about this skillet cookie for this week’s food column, they cheered. Last night, when our eldest finally tried it with some ice cream on top, she breathed, “This is good. This is life-changing.”
To be fair, I don’t think she had ever before tried any of the classic warm-dessert-topped-with-ice-cream combos. I have a feeling we will need to try brownie sundaes and blackberry cobbler with vanilla ice cream in the near future.
This big cookie is one of my favorites right now, though, in part because it calls for ingredients I keep on hand. I also like that it creates one big cookie instead of three dozen small cookies that I am tempted to snack on throughout the day.
Plus — and this is a big deal for me — it requires literally one skillet. One skillet for mixing AND baking. I’m literally running my dishwasher three times a day these days, so a one-skillet ANYthing sounds like a pretty good deal to me right about now.
It will require a bit of advance planning, though. The first step is melting together the brown sugar and butter. That creates a kind of caramelly background for the cookie, so it’s definitely worth the extra step. But it also means that there’s a cooldown period required before adding eggs (lest they scramble) or chocolate (lest it melt).
If you want to serve this as an after-dinner dessert, try doing step one in the afternoon before you start cooking supper. Then start your supper. Finish the other steps while your supper cooks and put this cookie in the oven as soon as you can, even if it’s right before you sit down to eat. Just be sure to set a timer…this is one you don’t want to risk burning up.
Amelia Plair is a mom and high school teacher in Starkville. Email reaches her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
LADY’S CHOCOLATE CHIP SKILLET COOKIE
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
1 cup brown sugar (light or dark)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups + 2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup chocolate chips (You can play around with this. Half milk chocolate and half semi-sweet is good, but use what you have on hand.)
Vanilla ice cream (optional, but not really)
■ Preheat oven to 325. Place butter in a 10 or 12-inch skillet with ovenproof handle set over medium heat. (Cast iron is ideal.) Melt butter completely. Add both sugars. If you have a gas stove, keep the heat set at medium. If you have an electric stove, turn the heat down a bit. Stir butter and sugars together well, being sure to scrape all sugars into the butter right from the start. (Introducing new sugar into the melted mixture will cause the whole thing to crystallize. Don’t ask how I know that.) Stir constantly until the mixture looks smooth and glossy, like caramel. This should happen within 5-10 minutes. Set the mixture to the side to cool down; you can speed this process along by placing the pan into the refrigerator or freezer if you like.
■ When mixture is room temperature, add eggs and vanilla. Mix well. Add flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix well. Fold in chocolate chips. Smooth top of cookie with a rubber spatula. Bake in the preheated oven for 26-33 minutes. The inside will still be quite gooey at 26 minutes; we like it that way, but cook it for longer if you prefer it. As with pie, if the edges begin to brown before you are ready to pull it from the oven, make a hole in a sheet of aluminum foil and place it over the top of the cookie to protect the edges and allow the center to cook more.
■ Many pre-COVID recipe authors recommend topping this with a few scoops of vanilla ice cream and handing everyone a spoon. While that would work in some circumstances, for now I am slicing it into wedges and topping each portion with a scoop of ice cream. Still delicious and fewer germs. Stay safe and enjoy!
From modernhoney.com (Melissa Stadler)
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