Chocolate Chip Cookies: A Commentary on Bougieness


Chocolate chip cookies are one of the few foods that span the gamut of bougie. You can have cold pre-made cookie dough from your favorite grocery store. You can bake the recipe according to the back of the chocolate chip bag (which also ranges in levels of extra) or you can follow a high falutin recipe posted by any number of websites (haha stay tuned). That is something I’ve always appreciated about chocolate chip cookies. No matter the person you can cater a recipe to them and not even hit the tip of the iceberg with knowledge on them. I’ve compiled a list of three recipes below (one of them being my absolute favorite and a labor of love who’s recipe I’ve tinkered with) that in my opinion span levels of bougieness and are a good jumping off point into the world of chocolate chip cookies.

Just know you can always get a tube of dough from Pillsbury too though.

“Secret Recipe” Chocolate Chip Cookies:

This is a recipe that I have shifted and tinkered with for some time (since I was about 11 or 12) but it is not necessarily novel in its essence. A fat bready cookie filled to the brim with “toppings” my dad asks for these any time I’m home and I used to know the entire recipe by heart.

What You’ll Need:

  • ½ cup rolled oats (raw, old-fashioned don’t use the quick oats if you can)
  • 2 ¼ cups of flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. Baking soda
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • ¼ tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 cup butter (softened!)
    • I cannot reiterate enough how important it is to use softened (and not melted) butter in ALL of your chocolate chip cookie recipes, unless the recipe states otherwise. Melted butter will change the texture of your cookies for the worse. Either leave your butter out overnight or follow any number of tricks to soften your butter quickly (besides just microwaving it)
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsps. Vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. Lemon juice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ¾ cup crushed walnuts (tip: beat a package of chopped walnuts with a rolling pin to achieve desired result, be careful not to pop the bag!) (optional)
  • ¾ cup raisins (optional)

How to Do It:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Blend rolled oats until they resemble flour. Mix ground oats, flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a mixer (or by hand) cream together sugars and butter. When fluffy and well blended, add lemon juice and vanilla, beat together.
  4. One at a time add eggs to your sugar and butter mixture. Wait until each egg is completely mixed in before adding the next.
  5. Stir the flour mixture into your egg mixture. You can do this by hand or using a mixer, but be careful when using a mixer as not to send flour flying everywhere.
  6. Add chocolate chips, walnuts, and raisins to your dough. Fold in by hand.
  7. Using a ¼ cup measure, scoop out dough, round it in your hands, and place on a baking sheet. Be sure to keep a couple inches between each cookie so they don’t blend together into one.
    1. You can use wax paper, foil, a silpat to keep your cookies from sticking. I find, that there is enough butter in them that they don’t stick no matter what so I usually use nothing.
  8. Put cookies in oven and bake for 14 – 17 minutes. Here are my thoughts: I like chewy cookies that are almost underdone so I shoot for 14. My dad likes crispier, almost burnt cookies so I’ll leave them in until 17 for him.
  9. Take cookies out and let them cool on a cooling rack and then put them in an airtight container for storage. Or devour them on sight.

Side Note: I hate walnuts and only began putting them in these cookies at my brother and father’s request. As much as I dislike walnuts, they shine in these cookies and the varying sweetness between the chocolate, raisins, and walnuts creates a delicate and delicious balance in these cookies. I would recommend, just once, making them with all the toppings listed and if you hate them, then back down to just 1 or 2. Enjoy!


Vegan NY Times Chocolate Chip Cookies:

I got this recipe from the Well Vegan and the recipe is linked here.

Baking has been getting me through this bout of being vegan and these cookies are a true blessing. As they “mature” the flavoring solidifies and they really do taste like a tried and true bougie chocolate chip cookie. A title worthy of a recipe that was birthed from a New York Times article. I think this can be attributed to the fact that these cookies use vegan buttery sticks rather than just coconut oil keeps the dough together and also do not overpower the flavor of the cookies. Fresh out of the oven, they taste like the applesauce that is in them, but as the days go on this fades leaving just the bliss of chocolate and salt. Dark chocolate is a given here as they tend to be vegan and also the sweetness of a milk chocolate would overpower the cookie. Maldon sea salt flakes are also necessary here as you need the sharp tang of flaky salt rather than the mellow build of table salt. One interesting portion of this recipe is that it calls for the dough to be chilled for at least 24 hours in order for the dry ingredients to truly soak in the wet. This leads to a chewy delightful cookie instead of a crisp one, a point I am constantly in arguments about. In April I’ll be sure to prepare the original NYT recipe, but for now these are doing me every bit of justice.


Queen Bougie Bon Appétit’s Chocolate Chip and Toffee Cookie:

So you can see the progression in bougie here. We went from just softened butter and semi-sweet chocolate chips, to softened vegan butter and dark chocolate chunks sprinkled with sea salt, to browned butter, chocolate ~disks~, toffee, and salt. Coming from the bougie queen to rule them all, Bon Appétit’s Brown Butter and Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies. This recipe departs from a great deal of our previous learning. First and foremost, the butter is not only melted, its browned, lending a crispier edge, this is balanced by the disks of chocolate in the place of chips. The disks spread and thin as they melt creating layers of chocolate which keep the cookie gooey in the center. The addition of toffee should also be highlighted as a step to keep the cookies soft and chewy in an effort to balance out the melted butter. These cookies also call for a short period for the flour to “hydrate” (God I love how bougie this publication is). As you can tell from the compilation of these recipes, chocolate chip cookies do have a tried and true form, and while everyone enjoys riffing off of this, a chewy chocolate chip cookie (say that five times fast) has a few stalwart rules to follow. If you have your own favorite chocolate chip cookie recipes send them to me! And enjoy squeezing out the last little bit of winter with a warm cookie and a cold glass of milk (or enjoy them year round like me).


Eat happily and be good Piggies.



Winter Stew Series: Ratatouille


So I’ve made a habit in the past of becoming giving up meat for Lent, aka going vegetarian. This year I decided to step it up a notch and go vegan. Read: no cheese, no yogurt, two of my biggest vices. I’ve taken this challenge head on and rather obsessively (more on this in February’s final post). But, I have to eat, and in order to eat I have to cook, and I wanted something to warm me in these not-so-cold winter months. I ruffled through my cookbooks and found one French recipe that is indeed vegan. Et voila. (Note: I departed from my cookbook and from the Ratatouille Disney trademarked recipe on my apron)

What You’ll Need:

  • 6 large ripe tomatoes
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 4 small zucchini
  • 1 medium spanish onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Basil (for serving)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Here’s How to Do It:

  1. Place a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add oil.
  2. Chop onion and add into the pot, cook until translucent and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.
  3. Rinse all veggies and chop into desired shape.
    1. For me: Eggplant and zucchini in medallions (does not matter if the eggplant medallions are quite large)
    2. Tomatoes into quarters
  4. Smash your garlic cloves and peel them
  5. Place all veggies and garlic in the pan. Cover and reduce heat slightly. Let cook until the vegetables have broken down, 45 – 90 minutes.
  6. Add sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir thoroughly.
  7. Serve, top with torn basil leaves. Devour!

Like I told you, not the trademark Disney Ratatouille recipe but a simple delicious dish of vegan goodness anyway. You may still have a flashback like Anton Ego. (I’m def Collette Tatou by the way, if we’re dibsing characters).


Be good and eat happily Piggies!


Cinnamon Biscuits

DSCN0380First off let me say, these are cinnamon buns without the yeast. Imagine a soft crumbly buttermilk biscuit but sweet with cinnamon shmear, ta-da! This recipe came as part of a box set sent as a promotion to entice you to buy more. I don’t think the business is even an entity anymore, my dad had to dig this recipe card up from the treasure trove at home.

I love a challenge when it comes to cooking and that is something I assuredly want from my food. It makes me feel like a real chef and that I am becoming more of an expert than before. Baking is always a challenge, thus in my early years before 12 I would challenge myself to wake up before the entire family and make these. Now that I know how to make a nice cream cheese frosting, these are begging for my attention and early-morning rising. Follow below!

What you’re gonna need:

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon of baking soda
  • ¼ cup of vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup of buttermilk
    • I don’t know if anyone else has had this issue, but buttermilk is a b-word to find. Most grocery stores no longer stock it or they only have fat-free versions (barf). You can make your own by taking 1 cup of milk and adding 2 tablespoons of lemon juice or white vinegar. Stir to combine (let sit for a couple minutes) then measure and use!
  • 1 stick of butter, soft enough to spread easily
  • ¼ cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon

Here’s how we do it:

  1. Preheat oven to 400° and grease a 9-inch circular cake pan or pie pan.
  2. Mix all of your dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt) in a large bowl.
  3. Add vegetable oil then buttermilk and mix just until combined.
  4. On a dry surface, sprinkle a light layer of flour, then dump out the dough and roll it out until it is ¼-⅓ of an inch thick.
  5. Spread the entire stick of butter over the surface of the dough. Mix the sugar and cinnamon then sprinkle that over the butter. Then, gently roll up the dough into a cylinder, pinch the seam to seal it.
  6. Cut the roll into 1 ½ inch slices and put in the pan, cut side up. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Obliterate.

Optional icing:

Personally, I think cinnamon buns are just a vehicle for cream cheese frosting. I mean, does Cinnabon even sell naked buns? No. So here’s a quick recipe for cream cheese frosting specifically for cinnamon buns. Thank me later.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup of powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of cream cheese, softened
  • 6 tablespoons of milk

What you gotta do:

  1. Cream together the powdered sugar and cream cheese in a mixer
  2. Add vanilla
  3. Add milk one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached

Smother this all over your cinnamon biscuits and revel in the feeling of overcoming a challenge.


Eat happily and be good piggies.


Winter Stew Series: Boeuf Bourguignon


I’m going to the fatherland!

I am spending the next week and some change in France being a gluttonous pig and I thought, you all should have a little taste of what that is like. Now boeuf bourguignon is a delicious dish, one of my favorites that my father makes, and one that there are about a million iterations of. I like to keep it simple, to focus on the beef, and to take my dad’s tips to heart.* Follow below!

*This recipe is a riff on Great Tastes: French’s Boeuf Bourguignon, my father follows the recipe from his french cookbook or Bible as I call it. Though both will help you achieve beef stewy goodness.

This is not a “healthy” dish so consume it in moderation but also follow the directions even if your arteries tell you no.

What you’ll need:

  • 3 lbs. Of Chuck beef
  • 3 ½ cups of red wine (get a full bottle to be safe, and also have one to serve with duh)
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsps. Of butter
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1 large carrot
  • 2 tbsps. Of flour
  • ½ of a pack of bacon, preferably thick cut, cut into squares
    • Here, my father uses fatback instead I believe, which is a solid square of bacon with very little meat, the option is yours
  • 2-3 peeled shallots
  • 10-12 small button mushrooms
  • A bay leaf, a couple stalks of parsley, and a couple sprigs of thyme (or a bouquet garni!)
  1. Chop your beef into inch thick cubes and crush your garlic cloves. Place the garlic, 3 cups of wine, beef, and herbs in a bowl and let marinate for 3 hours or overnight
    1. I ALWAYS SKIP THIS STEP. I just don’t find the need to let the wine permeate the meat that much before cooking tbh. I sometimes do it for 30 minutes, or not at all, and arrive at the same end point. So there.
  2. Preheat your oven to 315° and if you have chosen to marinate, drain your meat, dry the chunks with paper towels, and reserve the juice and herbs. If you have decided not to marinate your meat you can skip this step.
  3. Heat a pan over high heat. Chop your onion and carrot and throw in the herbs and cook for about 10 minutes. Remove the veggies from the pan and reserve.
  4. In the same pan, heat 1 tbsp of butter and add the meat (don’t crowd!) and cook until well browned on each side (3-5 minutes). Remove from heat and put the meat into an ovenproof dutch oven, along with the veggies.
  5. Sprinkle the flour over the veggies and meat in the dutch oven, put over medium heat, and stir until the meat is coated. Then pour in 3 cups of wine or “marinade”. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover it, and put it in the over for 2 hours.
  6. Heat the other tbsp of butter in your frying pan and add the bacon and shallots (yes we are cooking bacon in butter, deal with it). Remove from heat when the bacon is crisp, add this and your button mushrooms to the dutch oven after the 2 hours is up. Stir. Add the last ½ cup of wine, cover the dutch oven, and return it to your oven for another 30 minutes.
  7. Serve over rice, potatoes, or eat it on its own! It is the perfect winter stew, hearty, warm, sure to give you the itis.


My Christmas gift to you all! Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, continue to be good and eat happily in the New Year piggies!



Winter Stew Series: Spaghetti


Ok you caught me spaghetti isn’t really a stew but it’s warming and needed in these cold months. I have a deep and far reaching love for pasta that I’ve had since I was young. In fact, one of my earliest meals that I remember cooking was pasta (with a different sauce) but the recipe I’m going to share with you now is a favorite of mine and one that I’ve prepared for many years.

What you’ll need:

  • Pasta (I like fettuccine here, but do as you please)
  • 1 lb. of ground beef
  • 1 lb. of ground pork
  • 1 large red onion
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 shallot
  • 6 button mushrooms
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 1 zucchini ( I also sometimes use summer squash, leave it up to your taste and what’s available in the grocery store)
  • 1 6oz. Can of tomato paste (I like my sauce tangy)
  • 1 28oz. Can of peeled tomatoes
  • 3 tbsps. Of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shredded parmesan to garnish, if you’d like
  1. Put a large saucepan or a dutch oven over medium-high heat and add the olive oil
  2. Chop your onion, garlic, and shallot and add to the pan.
  3. Stir and cook until the onion is clear, about 7-9 minutes.
  4. Add your ground beef and pork, make sure to stir to break it up into chunks, and cook until all of the meat is brown, about 12 minutes.
  5. Add your tomato paste and stir to thoroughly combine.
  6. Rinse and chop your mushrooms, fresh tomatoes, and zucchini. Add the mushrooms first and stir for 3 minutes. Add your tomatoes and zucchini and stir to combine.
  7. Take your peeled tomatoes one-by-one and crush them in your hand over the pan. You’ll probably want to wear an apron as they tend to spray in every direction. Add the liquid from peeled tomatoes to your sauce as well.
  8. Add 2 cups of water to your sauce, season it, and cover it to let it simmer for 13-15 minutes or until it reaches your desired thickness. Stir occasionally.
  9. Cook your pasta! Spoon some sauce overtop, drench it in parmesan and dig in!

I find this meal to be one of the most comforting and filling things to eat in the winter. I hope you find the same and eat a large amount over the next few months because winter isn’t coming, it’s here.

Be warm and eat well piggies.


I Do Want Your Apple Pie Mama


I have been making an apple pie twice a year for my family for the past 10-11 years, so I know a little bit about it. In fact, pie crust was the first “difficult” recipe I undertook in hopes of becoming a serious chef. So I know a little something. The biggest thing I know is that I try something new every year, but as we continue through the holiday season I’ve got some tips and tricks for apple pie below!


    • Granny Smith are superior. You can argue, you can beg, you can plead, but you know the truth. However, I do like using a couple red apples as they break down during baking and thicken your filling. Keep the Granny Smith as the frontrunner, but a ratio of 3:1 granny smiths to red apples (gala or red delicious) works best.
  • PEEL YOUR APPLES I don’t think anyone enjoys pulling a stringy bit of apple skin out of their teeth after they tuck in to a sumptuous slice of apple pie. Its tedious, but do it.
  • Depending on the depth of your pie tin I would suggest using 6-8 apples, more if you need to. Try to get at least 8 slices out of each apple but I shoot for closer to 16.


  • COLD COLD COLD aka make sure all of your ingredients are as cold as possible. Freeze your butter, chill your flour, put ice cubes in your water, if possible, chill your bowls (yes it is that serious)
  • I almost always use a food processor to make pie crust now, but I did not come up in such luxury. If you are truly making pie crust by hand I suggest grating your frozen butter and putting it back in the freezer for at least half an hour. This will give you perfect, thin layers of butter without overworking yourself or overheating your ingredients.
  • Now you may be expecting me to give you a crust recipe, but pie crust is inherently quite vague and unwieldy. I will say the traditional ratio is 2 parts flour to 1 part butter and enough cold water for the crust to be cohesive. If you MUST have a recipe, I’m a pretty big fan of this one (though I do not follow their filling recipe).
  • Flour your surfaces, turn your dough often enough to ensure it doesn’t stick, and don’t be afraid of patching it up, it is your little baby and calls for constant care.
  • Feel free to get as wild as you’d like with the designs of your top crust, cut out designs, braid dough together, or go for traditional, the choices are endless.
    • All I ask is that you put a nice egg wash (1 beaten egg and a splash of water) over the entirety of your art.


  • The last time I measured ingredients for my apple pie filling was in 2007. Needless to say this will be vague.
  • Use equal parts brown and white sugar and taste your apples before sweetening, the requirements will change depending on the taste. And yes, you do need both sugars, the brown adds something the white can’t quite manage and the white adds the necessary sweetness.
  • Be sure to add lemon juice (and zest if you can), nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, flour, honey and anything else your little heart deems necessary.


  • After you put your crust in your pan, and your filling in your crust, add little chunks of butter over the top, these will melt and a depth of flavor to your pie.


  • I bake mine at 350° anywhere from 35-50 minutes. Honestly, until the crust is as golden as I like it. Voila!

This dish is obviously best fresh out of the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or handmade whipped cream. This Thanksgiving, my youngest cousin ate the entire pie save my slice. I’ll have you know his stamp of approval is quite difficult to attain.


Eat well, be good, and pig out.


Fall Weeknight Dinner Series: An Aside

While I am a big fan of the one pot stew dinner, I think we are all familiar with the “traditional” dinner scheme. What they pack in TV dinners to be reheated just to the brink of inedible: a protein, a carb, and a veggie. (Sometimes two veggies, one green and the other any color.) As Thanksgiving runs up on us faster than a brawl at a Black Friday sale, these recipes can also be of use to you.

First off and of course my very favorite: potatoes

Now there are obviously a large number of ways to prepare potatoes and you should go in whichever way your heart guides you, but I will give you three ways potatoes can be cooked to perfection.


  • The most important part here is to cut your potatoes into same sized cubes. You can do them as big or as small as you want, but you want them to be similar so that their cooking time is consistent.
  • With this method you do have some leeway in the type of potato you choose to cook: russet, red, new, fingerling (may not need to chop), the choices are endless.
  • I douse and I do mean douse my potatoes in good olive oil (you will taste it here so better to use a flavorful one than one with no ~conviction~). Also, season with salt and pepper and you can be somewhat heavy handed, potatoes tend towards being flavorless.
  • I roast my potatoes at 350 for about 40-45 minutes (checking and stirring them about every 15) because if I’m roasting them I’m looking for them to be soft not necessarily crispy, if you prefer yours crispy up the heat to 400 and cut 10-15 minutes off of that cooking time.


  • TBH one of my favorite potato preparations just behind French fries and this is important.
  • And I repeat, the point here is that the potatoes are cut into same size cubes so that they can cook at the same time.
  • Again, don’t worry about type of potato, I happen to like russet here but you can do what you want.
  • Oils/fats here are very important because they do strongly flavor the dish. If you can, cook your potatoes in duck fat, you will never have a better experience. But if not, I like a 50/50 blend of butter and olive oil, they actually complement each other quite well.
  • Now this is gonna sound like a lot, but we are pan-frying so I make sure that there is at least about a ⅓-½ inch of oil in the bottom of my pan. I heat over medium heat, sometimes I throw in garlic first, and then my potatoes.
  • An important note: actually let your potatoes fry for a little bit before you stir them. If you stir prematurely they will rip apart and their skins will stick to the bottom of the pan. But if you leave them for about 5-7 minutes then stir, you’ll find them golden and homogeneous.
  • Now for overall cooking time, what is the most convenient about pan-frying is that you can cook them as long as you like. If you want them fluffy and just done, I would say about 25-30 minutes (until a knife slides cleanly through). Want them crispy? Add on another 10 or however long until you are pleased. Season with salt and pepper and destroy.


  • You must use Russet potatoes for this recipe, don’t be tempted by other varieties, use Russet don’t regret.
  • The most important pointer on mashed potatoes (besides using Russets), I picked up from a family friend: save the water you cook your potatoes in. When you’re mixing in your cream, butter, milk, and hopefully garlic add a little bit of this starchy water to reach the correct consistency. It helps keep you from overbeating and making gummy potatoes and also keeps you from using a gallon of milk and four sticks of butter.
  • Otherwise, mashed potatoes are a simple and delicious classic. Enjoy!

If you couldn’t tell I love potatoes, try these as you approach Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving and impress your auntie with your talents (don’t try mac and cheese though, you’re not ready yet).