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The Ultimate Chocolate Cookie Book    by Bruce Weinstein & Mark Scarbrough order for
Ultimate Chocolate Cookie Book
by Bruce Weinstein
Order:  USA  Can
William Morrow, 2004 (2004)

Read an Excerpt

* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Have to admit it, I'm an unreformed chocaholic, so this cookie cookbook immediately grabbed my attention. The subtitle almost says it all - 'From Chocolate Melties to Whoopie Pies, Chocolate Biscotti to Black and Whites, with Dozens of Chocolate Chip Cookies and Hundreds More'. There are no photos in the cookbook, but hey, use your imagination!

The authors tell us that 'no one ever tires of chocolate' (that certainly describes my two sons). They ascribe the brainwave that led to the combination of chocolate and kookje (cookies) to Dutch chemist Coenraad Johannes Van Houten in 1828 (before him chocolate was just a drink). Clearly a great man, he beavered away in his lab to make 'cocoa powder'. Then in Great Britain, Joseph Storrs Fry made the world's first chocolate bar; the U.S. made the first chocolate cookie, the Oreo bar in 1912. Don't you think these folk deserve more recognition for improving our quality of life?

To help us match cookies with our own choco-tastes, the authors offer a 'crunch-o-meter' with each recipe, indicating 'fudgy', 'chewy', 'cakey', 'crunchy' or 'hard'. They also provide tips on topics like oven rack position, equipment, even on 'High-Altitude Baking'. The recipes - yumm! Never thought of 'Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies' but why not? Must try 'Brownie Drops'. I already love 'Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies', so will give this recipe a go. The chocolate version of 'Cats' Tongues' belongs on my festive table, as do 'Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti', 'Chocolate Cinnamon Checkerboards', and 'Spumetti'. I wonder about some combinations - chocolate with cornmeal, ginger, pumpkin, tofu, pepper, or with (yikes) potato chips! And I have to try 'Chocolate Snickerdoodles' just for the name.

If you and your family love chocolate like we do, then you might want to indulge yourselves in The Ultimate Chocolate Cookie Book for the holidays and all year round.

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