During Caroline’s field hockey years at Duke, every game was followed by a lavish tailgate. The team parents brought the food to Durham or to such faraway places as Norfolk or Boston. Dick was the darling of the field hockey girls because he always brought these cookies, modified from the recipe on the Nestlé chocolate chip package. Dick’s field hockey cookies, packed in Ziploc® bags, are still in demand.
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed tightly
¾ cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla (real vanilla extract, not artificial vanillin)
2 sticks butter (1/2 pound) at room temperature
16 ounces of Nestlé chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Mix thoroughly—a whisk works well. Set aside.
Put sugars in electric mixer bowl and mix. Add vanilla and mix. Add room-temperature butter, one stick at a time and mix. Add one egg at a time and mix. Add flour mixture gradually, mixing thoroughly. Add chocolate chips.
Drop by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake 7 ½ to 9 minutes until golden brown. Cool on baking sheet for 1 ½ minutes, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.
Dick’s tips for success
Pack dark brown sugar into measuring cup under high pressure until no more sugar will fit. I use a 1-cup plastic cup for the sugar and then use the 1/2 or 3/4 cup stackable companion as the compression piston.
Baking sheets should be warm to start, as if they’d just baked a batch.
After first use of a baking sheet, cooking time may decrease. Cookies will continue to bake while they are cooling on the sheet and the rack, so take out of oven while centers are just starting to turn toward golden brown.
For chewy cookies, reduce baking time; for crispy cookies, increase time.
All-important timeline: Bake, cool 1 ½ minutes, unload cookies, wait about 5 minutes, start reloading baking sheet 2 minutes before that sheet goes into oven. This timeline presumes one sheet comes out of oven and the next sheet goes in immediately.