You know how Mama Berenstain Bear always had freshly-baked cookies waiting for Brother and Sister Bear when they came home from school? (At least she did in one book… I suppose it’s politically incorrect now since that’s not a healthy snack.)
June Cleaver always had some for Beaver and Wally, too. Their kitchens were always spotless – no sign of them mixing up cookie dough – and the cookies always came right out of the oven as the kids arrived home.
Though I would love to be able to serve warm chocolate chip cookies at a moment’s notice, I’ve never figured out how, exactly, to do that… Until now. Maybe you all do this already, but did you know that freezing cookie dough is extremely easy, and you can have warm cookies in the oven – dirtying only a baking sheet – in about 20 minutes?
Why it’s taken me this long to do this, I don’t know. All you have to do is roll the cookie dough into balls as you normally would, then freeze them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper (waxed paper would probably work, too). Make sure they don’t touch each other while they’re freezing!
After they freeze all the way, just put them in a plastic bag and place the bag in the freezer. It’s OK if the cookies touch each other once they are frozen; they shouldn’t stick together.
When you want fresh, warm cookies, preheat your oven and place the frozen (no need to thaw) cookie dough balls on a baking sheet. Bake the cookies for just a couple of minutes longer than normal.
And voila, you have yummy cookies with no effort required! (Aside from the effort to mix up the original dough, of course.)
I’ve found that this is not only great for being able to have a quick dessert, it’s also helped with portion control. You know how it is, when you make cookies, you make a big batch and then eat them all in about 8.3 hours. I have little self control when it comes to sweets, so making cookies is always a dangerous proposition.
I’ve also found that it’s great when taking a meal to someone – you can just pull cookie dough balls out of the freezer and give them baking instructions!
But, when I’m pulling cookie dough out of the freezer, it’s so much easier to just fix the number of cookies appropriate for one eating. I usually fix one for each kid and two for each adult and that’s it. I won’t be eating five cookies because I’ve only baked two for me. At first I thought the cookie dough in the freezer would be tempting, but if you use real butter, it’s so hard that you might as well be biting a (tasty) ice cube.
So, that’s how I can now serve freshly-baked cookies at a moment’s notice! Do you have any tips for freezing cookie dough?