This recipe is a leftover from my Christmas baking binge. My husband has been off of sweets now for quite some time. However, with Valentines Day coming tomorrow, it seems appropriate to offer up a recipe with chocolate.
If you live in Japan and make anything with brown sugar, you'll notice some differences that affect baking. Most standard western brown sugar is darker and has a deeper molasses flavor than standard Japanese brown sugar. You'll also notice that Japanese brown sugar will not pack when you measure it.
I've made this recipe with both Chelsea brown sugar (purchased from Nisshin supermarket) and Japanese brown sugar (which you get in any Japanese market). Using western brown sugar and packing it makes a flatter cookie so I have to add about a 1/4 cup more flour with western brown sugar. Also, the cookies are quite a bit lighter in color with Japanese brown sugar.
I've also make these cookies with a mixture of Crisco and butter as well as using Japanese "keiki margarin" (cake margarine) only and there doesn't appear to be much difference. If you're in Japan, it's simpler and likely cheaper just to use the cake margarine.
Modified Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe:
- 3/4 cup brown sugar (packed)
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup Crisco
- 1/2 cup butter (softened but not melted!)
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 2 eggs
- 3 cups flour (if using western brown sugar; if using Japanese brown sugar - 2 3/4 cups flour)
- 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
Cream the brown sugar, white sugar, Crisco, and butter with an electric hand mixer. Add the salt, baking soda, and eggs and mix well. Add half the flour and mix again. At this point you'll have to mix with a large spoon or your hands. Add the remainder of the flour until thoroughly incorporated. Stir in the chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto an un-greased baking sheet, placing at least 2.5 inches between each. Bake at 375 degrees F./190 degrees C. for 10-12 minutes. Makes 3 dozen.