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MissAusten's avatar

Kitchen chemists: Will this cookie recipe end in disaster (see details please)

Asked by MissAusten (16127points) December 3rd, 2010

Today I decided to make these Reese’s Chewy Chocolate Cookies while talking on the phone with my grandmother. Big mistake, because with all the chatting I misread the recipe and didn’t notice until the cookie dough was done.

Instead of using 1½ cups (2½ sticks) of butter, I used ¾ cup (1½ sticks). What effect will this have on the cookies? The dough looks normal, and doesn’t seem “off” from what cookie dough normally looks like. However, I’ve never made this particular recipe. Will the cookies be edible? Is there anything I can do to save them, even though the rest of the ingredients, including the peanut butter chips, have already been mixed in?

Thanks! The dough is in the fridge until I get back from the library, so I won’t be baking them immediately.

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18 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Wy can’t you add the remaining softened butter now? Just mix gently with the chips in.

iamthemob's avatar

That’s what I was thinking @marinelife. If you melt the butter, that might work.

However, if you can’t for some reason (like they’re in the oven) butter generally makes cookies crispy. So..you might have some crumbly cookies that don’t spread out normally.

MissAusten's avatar

Will that work? Usually the butter is creamed with the sugar so you get that “light and fluffy” stage that the other ingredients are then mixed into. I thought creaming the butter like that was one of the essential cookie steps, but I don’t know where I heard that or why that’s always been stuck in my head.

wundayatta's avatar

Butter makes cookies soft and melty and rich. When you put less butter in, you get a crisper, harder cookie—like biscotti. Butter also serves to convey flavor. It coats your tastebuds with every flavor of the cookie.

Melted butter makes cookies more chewy. So you might as well go ahead and melt it and beat it in. It might actually make the cookie better.

Source.

marinelife's avatar

Well, you have already creamed half of the butter so it should be OK to just fold the rest in.

JLeslie's avatar

I would add the rest of the butter also. Better than cooking them without the butter, because it is such a significant amount. If you were only off by a few tablespoons I might say just bake them, but an entire stick of butter will really change your results.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Your measures are off in all ways. If you’re talking about a ¼-pound / 4 oz. / half-cup “stick” of butter, then you have ½-cup per stick.

Three sticks of butter would be 1–½ cup. 2–½ cups of butter would be five sticks. !-½ sticks of butter is (we finally got this right) ¾ cup.

From http://www.ochef.com/837.htm:
In this country [USA], butter is mostly packaged in 1-pound boxes, with four individually wrapped quarters or sticks. Each pound is two cups of butter. Each quarter-pound stick is 8 tablespoons or a half a cup. Each tablespoon is ½ ounce. (So to answer your question, a half pound of butter is one cup.)

The cookies should be okay, if harder than you’re used to. These won’t not be “chewy” cookies.

JLeslie's avatar

Ooh, I was not even looking at the math. Right. One stick equals a half cup. So what did the recipe call for 11/2 cups or 21/2 sticks? They are not equal. 11/2 cups is 3 sticks.

MissAusten's avatar

Sorry…the recipe called for 1¼ cups (2½ sticks). That’s just a typo on my part. I did use ¾ cup.

OK, I’m going to stir in some more butter before baking. @everyone: Thanks! I’ll let you all know how they turn out!

MissAusten's avatar

I baked the cookies, and while they taste good they are very, very greasy. :( After baking, the cookie sheets look like they were coated in oil even though I didn’t grease them at all.

When I looked up the recipe online to link to for this question, I noticed a lot of the reviews said the cookies were too flat, which is also how mine turned out. I think if I buy the peanut butter chips again, I’ll find another chocolate cookie recipe to use them with. It’s not a total loss, since they do taste good and the kids certainly aren’t complaining!

marinelife's avatar

@MissAusten So sorry. It sounds bad.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Funny, “the kids certainly aren’t complaining” sounds like TOTAL WIN to me.

MissAusten's avatar

@marinelife It’s ok. If I hadn’t added the butter, the cookies probably would have had some other flaw. The reason I don’t usually use the recipes on the bags of chips is that I’ve found there are much better recipes available. Today I was just too lazy to go looking for a chocolate cookie recipe and too distracted by Grandma’s extremely detailed account of her bowel troubles. Ick

They’ll get eaten, no doubt about that!

marinelife's avatar

@MissAusten Depending on Grandma’s bowel troubles, perhaps one of the extra-greasy cookies would help.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Damn. I shoulda stopped following while I had the chance.

MissAusten's avatar

@marinelife lol Maybe I’ll mail her some!

wundayatta's avatar

If you want to try to fix them, here are the instructions for making the cookies spread less:

You want the cookies to spread less: Use solid vegetable shortening or substitute some solid vegetable shortening for some of the butter OR use an egg for liquid OR use cake flour OR cut the sugar by a few tablespoons OR switch from baking soda to baking powder OR chill the dough before baking it.

breedmitch's avatar

I’m too late this time, but for next…
Cream the butter you left out with a small amount of sugar and then mix into the dough, adding a bit more flour.

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