I can't thank Melissa enough for baking along with us and for Elyse for stepping in and posting Melissa's bake-along. I mean, its true, I called Elyse last night at 9:30 PM to tell her my friends decided to take the boat out and sleep on it, anchored amongst the reeds on the Delta. I knew that meant I wouldn't be able to get the post up first thing Sunday - no Internet on the "high seas," and that people would be looking for it so I asked Elyse to step in very last minute, and she was such a sweet willing champ - Elyse you rock! Also, thanks to Elyse, I am the proud owner of that cute little blue/green cake stand in the picture at top. I love it (I would collect cake stands if I had room) - and plan to use it often. Thanks so much (again) Elyse.
So, because these cookies are bestsellers at the Sweet Melissa Patisserie, and other SMS'ers posted their results this week with rave reviews, I decided to make these lactose free by substituting lactose free margarine for butter so I could try them. I doubled the batch so I could make one with the toasted almonds and one without. My cookies turned out very flat - and even though I baked them a little longer than the recommended 13 minutes, they tasted like cookie dough. Nothing wrong with this - Mathias said it was a perfect chocolate chip cookie for him - I think most of the time he'd rather just eat the cookie dough rather than a baked cookie. And, I know from sharing these cookies with co-workers and friends, there are other's like him out there!
I suspect after reading Melissa's post, that they weren't supposed to be quite this flat and cookie-dough like. I am not sure if it was because of the butter for margarine substitution, or because I hurried along the chilling time by using the freezer. Not sure. But doesn't really matter because people LOVED these cookies ALOT. And I thought they were fabulous. Granted I haven't had a chocolate chip cookie in years, but still, delicious. As you can see from the photo above, I used ALOT of Valharona semi-sweet chocolate and I think that helped contribute the chocolate goodness that these were. I tried both the ones with the nuts and without, and even though I LOVE nuts, I did actually prefer the ones without nuts. I definately will make these again with real butter to see how they turn out, as I know they will disappear quickly.
Finally, thanks to all the SMS bakers for your patience and understanding with this week's recipe. Sorry it was a little last minute getting it all pulled together.