French Fridays with Dorie – Secret Valentine Reveal!

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My Secret Valentine was Michelle Willard Hoffer and she was really on the stick. I got these the day before the Superbowl – way to be on top of things Michelle! In fact, I used the bag of Valentine Reese’s Hearts to make this delicious Chubby Hubby Snack Mix for the Superbowl, so it was really nice that these came so early!

I have to confess, I don’t recognize my Valentine’s name – I tried looking on the FFWD page and on the FFWD Facebook page and I could not find her blog anywhere. Maybe I am dumb but I really did try. In any case, thank you for the package Michelle – it was really fun to receive and I think I will keep the box forever because it looks like a big Hershey bar – check it out:

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The cookies Michelle made me are a Dorie recipe (from Baking From My Home to Yours, I think) called World’s Best Chocolate Chip Cookie and while that is a dangerous claim to make, they were pretty darn good. Crisp, buttery, and bursting with little Hershey’s chocolate pieces, they are perfect dunked in milk or coffee. I know that because I just ate two of them dunked in my coffee for breakfast. Don’t judge me.

World’s Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 t salt

3/4 t baking soda

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temp

1 cup sugar

2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

2 t pure vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chopped (she used Hershey’s Baking Melts and chopped them with a hand chopper)

1 cup finely chopped walnuts (because I am a weirdo I would leave the nuts out but I know that I am the weird one and most people love walnuts)

Center a rack in the oven and preheat it to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats. Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda.

Beat the butter at medium speed for one minute, until smooth. Add the sugars and beat for another two minutes, until well-blended. Beat in the vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for one minute after each addition. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients in 3 portions, mixing just until incorporated.

Mix in the chocolate and nuts by hand with a wooden spoon or stiff spatula.

Spoon the dough by slightly rounded tablespoonfuls onto the baking sheets, leaving about two inches between spoonfuls. Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, one sheet at a time, rotating the sheet halfway through baking. Let the cookies rest for about one minute on the cookie sheet, then transfer to a cooling rack.

Something I learned from this experience: International shipping is hella expensive! the first time I went to the post office to mail my box to my Valentine they wanted $50 – um, no. I got some advice on packaging and redid things a bit so on my second attempt they only needed $19.90. That is definitely doable but seriously, the box weighed under 2 lbs. And obviously whatever plane it flew on was going to Australia with or without my box so I really think shipping costs are CRAZY. I don’t ship internationally often (well, ever) so maybe I was and still am just suffering from the sticker shock of it all. I will say that it did give me a grim sort of satisfaction that I got the price down to less than half of what I was originally quoted though. Also, sometimes people at the post office are so nice and other times they are so flippin’ cranky! I walked in at 11:40 to ship this box and the first thing the lady says to me is “Fill out this form and we ARE closing at noon.” Thanks for the update but I highly doubt it will take me over 20 minutes to fill out this form Postmaster General. But then when I went in the next day she was super nice to me. Maybe she just didn’t have enough coffee the day before?

This exchange was another fun “e-vent” organized by Alice from A Mama, A Baby, and a Sharpei in the Kitchen and if you want to check out some other cookie recipes you can find a bevy of them here on the FFWD site. Cookies for everyone! Oh and Happy Valentine’s Day!

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13 thoughts on “French Fridays with Dorie – Secret Valentine Reveal!

  1. It’s possible she is one of the two or three that have been cooking along with FFWD but don’t have a blog and asked to participate 🙂 We will have to see!! I’m waiting to get a post from a few of those that don’t have blogs so I can post the cookies they received for them, so check my page later!

  2. I think we need to find your mystery Secret Valentine – that’s double the pleasure of Not-knowing, Maggie. All your “loot” looks delicious and great and, well, chocolatey. Does it help to know that it cost me almost as much to mail stateside at the USPS as it did for you to mail internationally? Proving, I think, that you are smarter than I. How is it that the postal service can be billions of dollars in debt?!?

  3. Oooohhh, a real mystery!
    Your cookies looks good – now I have to figure out who you sent yours too 🙂 Yes, international shipping is crazy – you should try sending 40,000 pound boxes overseas – ouch!

  4. You really do have a secret Valentine! I love the box. International shipping can be crazy expensive! I have friends in Lithuania and it drives me nuts how much it costs to ship there!

  5. Hi Maggie, My crazy life has finally given me space to say thank you for the lovely cookies that I received today!!! I have mailed internationally before and I know that it is highway robbery. To get my postal bill to the US down from $28 to $13 (for a mere 15g difference), I ripped off the paper covering from the parcel and commandeered the postal worker’s scissors and tape gun to reseal the box. Insane!!! Then there was a tense moment where I thought my box didn’t get to its recipient on time – but it did, right on Valentines Day, just like yours. Your cookies look fabulous, and I think chocolate chip cookies for breakfast sounds wonderful. Good luck with tracking down your Valentine!

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