C is for...

 do you know the secret to perfect cookies?
i didn't until today. today, for the first time EVER, i made perfect cookies.
ok, here's the deal. it's elementary. those of you who have been making perfect cookies since birth will likely laugh at me. but i didn't realize the error of my previous ways until today, so i'm thinking that maybe someone else out there could use my hints.
first, the recipe:

oven at 375.
1 c shortening (you'd be surprised what a difference it makes. it's better than margarine and WAY better than the soy butter i usually use.)
3/4 c brown sugar
3/4 white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

mix those ingredients in a mixer, then add:

2 1/2 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

mix and add 1/2 package of semi sweet chocolate chips (or if your husband is lactose intolerant like mine is, you don't add any chips. and the cookies are still a delight, and you're happy because you don't have to make a trip to the hospital tonight!). drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet (i like to line mine with parchment paper) and bake for 8-10 minutes. 

THE SECRET: you HAVE to take them out of the oven BEFORE they look done. do you copy? not brown. not brown at all. they'll spread less time in the oven, which makes them thicker and chewier and all-around better.  another secret to perfect cookies: get yourself one of these guys.

they make the most perfectly sized dough balls in the world! you could also use a tablespoon. doesn't affect the taste at all, but they look so much fancier and perfect. and i am one step closer to kicking everyone's butt at bake sales. (that's a lie, i've never participated at a bake sale in my life)

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