Why are Chocolate Chip Cookies the default cookie?

Ah, what a wonderful weekend I had. It was between 75-80 degrees over the weekend, and we did all we could to be outside most of the weekend. I got a little pink, or maybe a little burnt. I do not mind. As pale as I am, I am used to the first sun of the season to leave me a little crisp around the edges. We had brunch outside, ran errands, decided to stay in Portland and do an early happy hour, I sat in the sun and read, and we extensively cleaned up our back yard. A full, sun filled weekend. It is supposed to be nice again today, but then we go back to rain for the rest of the week. I am just grateful for any amount of sunshine we can get right now!

I was also going to make Chris some of his favorite chocolate chip cookies yesterday, but then I was just wiped out after hours in the sun and hours cleaning up the backyard. Instead while parking my butt on the couch, and letting my mind wander a bit, I came to this random question: Why are chocolate chip cookies the default cookie or usually the cookie of choice? At meetings you usually get a choice of ham, turkey or veggie sandwiches or wraps. When you get a cookie it is usually chocolate chip. Why is that?

When I Googled: “Why are chocolate chip cookies the default cookie” all I got was a list of recipes for chocolate chip cookies. So I decided to look at the history of the chocolate chip cookie. This is what I found on Wikipedia:

“The chocolate chip cookie was accidentally developed by Ruth Graves Wakefield in 1930. She owned the Toll House Inn, in Whitman, Massachusetts, a very popular restaurant that featured home cooking in the 1930s. Her cookbook, Toll House Tried and True Recipes, was published in 1936 by M. Barrows & Company, New York. It included the recipe “Toll House Chocolate Crunch Cookie”, which rapidly became a favorite to be baked in American homes.

Wakefield is said to have been making chocolate cookies and on running out of regular baker’s chocolate, substituted broken pieces of semi-sweet chocolate from Nestlé thinking that they would melt and mix into the batter. They did not and the chocolate chip cookie was born. Wakefield sold the recipe to Nestlé in exchange for a lifetime supply of chocolate chips. Every bag of Nestlé chocolate chips sold in North America has a variation (butter vs. margarine is now a stated option) of her original recipe printed on the back.”

Ah, Nestle Toll House. Just thinking of the yellow bag reminds me of my grandma. She always made the recipe on the back of the bag of chocolate chips, and at the time (I am not sure if it is still the case today) the recipe called for Crisco. I never thought anything of it. Now I am grossed out thinking of all the many batches and batches of cookies I ate that were made with Crisco. I use butter today. My mom used margarine, mostly because I think it was the least expensive. She also made a variation of the chocolate chip cookie in bar form, what she called: “Congo Squares.” It is interesting to think my grandma = Crisco, my mom = margarine, me = butter. I guess you do not always do things they way you were raised.

Massachusetts has even named the chocolate chip cookie the state cookie. I love them, and I eat them, but how did they become the cookie of choice? What is your default cookie?

One thought on “Why are Chocolate Chip Cookies the default cookie?

  1. Pingback: Emotional decisions: Another cookie? New jeans? « random olio

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