Saturday, February 23, 2013

Pretzel and Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Cookies

Raise your hands if you watch the show Girls on HBO.  Both of my hands are emphatically raised right now (Newt is dictating) because not only do I watch the show -- I adore the show.  I know a lot of people don't like it.  Maybe it's because it presents the truth like a slap in the face and that could be hard for some people.  

You may have seen Lena Dunham stumbling around in her heels accepting Golden Globes recently (at least I can walk in heels better than she can although she's still beating me in the winning-Golden Globes category).  The first season was magical and, although this second season has had some hit and miss moments, I still find it strikingly relevant.  

It's one of those shows that if I were more brave, I would watch with my mother or father and be like "This is the truth.  Ignore all the white noise of nudity and profanity one encounters during each episode and know that I felt (let's be honest -- still regularly feel) this way."  But I am still not comfortable enough to watch nudity on TV with my parents.  But that's an issue for another day. 

In the meantime, order HBO.  Or, 'borrow' someone's HBO Go password (thanks Mr. and Mrs. Samuel!) and watch it.  There's only ten episodes to a season.  Each episode is 30 minutes and there has only been one full season.  We are through the sixth episode of the second season.  Catch up!  You can do it!

In a recent episode, there is a scene where the main character Hannah is interviewing for a job.  There is a picture frame on a wall with nothing in it and written on the wall outside of the frame are the words "Where the magic happens."  In a comical exchange, we learn that the picture frame represents one's 'comfort zone' and the 'magic happens' outside of said comfort zone. Although this may not seem like the most clever situation ever written within a TV series, it is an example of how the show reinvents old-fashioned cliches into charming coming-of-age themes for the ubiquitous generations X and Y.   
Some may see this scene and apply it to their jobs or their goals in life.  Hannah used it as an excuse to do cocaine for the first time.  I apply the scene to cookies.  In a blog of standard cakes and brownies, I am going to go outside that picture frame and experience the magic by pushing the envelope on what constitutes a classic chocolate chip cookie.  With pretzels and butterscotch.  BOOM.

Pretzel and Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 cup salted butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1 egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped pretzels
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 325F degrees.

Mix your flour and baking soda in a bowl and set aside. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars together. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and mix well. Gradually add the flour mixture and stir until a dough forms.  Fold in the pretzels, butterscotch chips, and chocolate chips.*  Do not overmix the dough.

Chill dough for at least 30 minutes (or up to 5 days) in the refrigerator.  Drop by tablespoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 8-12 minutes or until edges are slightly browned.  Mine took around 12 minute range but I was luxuriating in a bigger kitchen at the time with a bigger oven.

*This is a great recipe to make with a child.  I tackled it with my nephew John and he loved chopping the pretzels and adding in all the chips and pretzels.  Use a ¼ cup measuring cup to make the ½ cup pours twice as time consuming.  

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