Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies Inspired By How to Raise a Reader

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As y’all likely have noticed, I’m pregnant. Like very pregnant…second half of the third trimester pregnant. Much of my reading lately has consisted of books about raising kids and general parenting. I’ve been perusing some of the classics (think What to Expect When You’re Expecting), but I’ve found some less clinical, more philosophical reads, and those are the ones I’m choosing to feature here. I’ve found them equal parts helpful, entertaining and therapeutic. One of these treasures is How to Raise a Reader by Pamela Paul and Maria Russo.

Review

This delightful read focuses on one aspect of parenting that is very important to me–how to instill the love of reading in your child. It may come as no surprise that the absolute best way to get a kid, or really anyone, to reject something is to force it on them. How to Raise a Reader focuses on practical tips to encourage reading rather than telling parents to act like book tyrants.

I like that it’s sectioned into phases of your child’s life, from infant to teenager, with advice for cultivating a voracious and curious reader. One of my favorite tips for all stages is that to raise a reader, you have to be a reader. This means ensuring that your own love of reading is visible and obvious to your child. One way to do this is obviously to let them see you reading, but keeping books accessible and incorporating book talk into family conversations are just as important to keeping the interest in reading alive.

I also appreciate that the authors consider all kinds of reading to be reading. We’re not just talking about chapter books and classics here. Audiobooks, comics, and graphic novels are just as enriching as typical novels, sometimes even more so. This book is peppered with age-appropriate book recommendations too, so if you’re ever looking for inspiration to stock your little one’s bookshelf, you’ll find it here.

I’m extremely passionate about reading. That’s no secret. I think it’s absolutely one of the best ways to expand your horizons, vocabulary, and even empathy. Books allow you to connect with people in a completely unique and intimate way that can’t be achieved through any other form of communication. You can even explore the mind of people who’ve long since died! Reading is total magic, and I cannot wait to share that magic with our little girl.

Chocolate Chip Cookies, a Classic

This is a book about raising a reader, so there weren’t any dessert references. I did, however, find some inspiration in its familiar book recommendations and relatable anecdotes describing the habits of kids enamored with reading. Few sweet treats are as comforting as classic chocolate cookies. What better dessert pairing for a book that focuses on making reading a familiar and comfortable experience for your child?

I am more than okay with knowing that whatever life out there holds for them, they will be more ready for it, having indulged in the stories held within books…They’ll be better prepared to read situations and to understand context and to search for meaning in the face of the seemingly incomprehensible…They will be able to read people and situate themselves and others in the world. My hope is that they will seize on books as their own lifelines and share their stories with others.

How to Raise a Reader, Introduction

How to Make These Extra Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe is slightly adapted from the recipe featured on the back of Nestle chocolate chip bags (seriously). Start by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F. Then gather your ingredients.

You’ll need:

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) of butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (Optional, but if you omit, add 1-2 additional tablespoons of all-purpose flour).

The Baking

You’ll first want to combine your flour, salt, and baking soda in a mixing bowl.

Then, beat the butter, sugars, and vanilla until creamy. I used my stand mixer for this, and it’s just the easiest thing ever.

**Pro tip: Soften your butter by leaving it out at room temperature for a few hours before baking.

Next, add your eggs into the butter and sugar mix one at a time and beat thoroughly after each egg. After that, you’ll want to mix in your flour mixture gradually.

It’ll start to look something like this.

Now for the fun part! Stir in your chocolate chips and nuts (if you’re using them).

Little dark specks of sweet deliciousness.

To get an extra thick texture, I spoon even portions of dough into the cups of a greased muffin pan.

I actually got this trick from my husband. The result is awesome.

Yummmmm

Bake your yummy morsels from 9-10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool and enjoy! Let me know your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe in the comments!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chocolate chip cookies, cookies
Servings: 24 cookies

Equipment

  • stand or hand mixer

Ingredients

  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened (2 sticks)
  • ¾ cup granulated white sugar
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (optional) If omitting, add 1-2 tbsps. of additional flour.

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Gather ingredients.
  • Combine flour, salt, and baking soda in a mixing bowl.
  • Beat sugars, butter, and vanilla with a stand or hand mixture until creamy.
  • Add in eggs to butter mixture one at a time. Beat well after each egg.
  • Gradually mix in flour mixture to butter mixture.
  • Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if using).
  • Drop onto greased baking sheet or muffin pan.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Cool and enjoy.

Notes

Slightly adapted from Nestle’s recipe.

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