The Sweet History of Chocolate Chip Cookies

Freshly baked cookies

If asked what America’s favorite cookie is, what comes to mind first? If you thought the chocolate chip cookie, then you thought right. Since it’s inception, chocolate chip cookies have been one of America’s favorite cookie flavors to dip, dunk, and chew. Whether they’re thick and soft or flat and crispy, there’s a chocolate chip cookie out there for everyone to love.
But this was not always so. In fact, the chocolate chip cookie is a relatively new invention, dating back to less than a century ago.
It all dates back to 1938, in the kitchen of Ruth Grave Wakefield’s bar and hotel, the Toll House Inn. According to lore, Ruth had run out of the bakers chocolate that regularly used to make her inn’s drop cookies. Instead, she broke up pieces of Nestle chocolate. When it came out of the oven, Ruth discovered that her freshly baked cookies were a unique conception, and they quickly won the hearts of Americans all over.
During the war that shortly followed their creation, many soldiers would receive care packages with Ruth’s chocolate chip cookies. Soldiers began writing home, asking for the cookies in their care package. Because of this, the chocolate chip cookie craze went national, and everyone wanted the recipe.
In fact, Ruth’s cookies became so popular that Nestle eventually struck up a deal with her. In exchange for a lifetime supply of free chocolate pieces, Ruth agreed to allow Nestle to put her famed recipe on Nestle’s chocolate pieces package. Talk about a sweet deal!
Today, chocolate chip cookies are a mainstay cookie flavor in America; there are even variations on the classic recipe. For example, some bakers use colored chocolate candies in place of chocolate pieces, or even use peanut butter pieces instead. Many like to create a savory cookie flavor by adding a dash of coarse sea salt to the top of the cookie, creating a contrast with the sweetness of the cookie.

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