“Nature Has Limits,” the Chocolate Chip Cookie Said
I’ve been working on my chocolate chip cookies a lot recently, ever since I learned that if the butter is nice and cold when you mix up the dough, they have a marvelous, chewy texture that you can’t get any other way.
Unfortunately, when the butter is too cold, the sugar doesn’t dissolve fully when you’re beating, so the cookies have a slight granulated quality. It’s a delicate balancing act.
This weekend I learned a hard lesson. After baking several batches with carefully-calibrated adjustments, I believe I hit the very point of coolness at which the sugar is fully dissolved, and alas! The cookies are not quite chewy enough. It turns out that my idealized goal of a smooth cookie with just the right degree of chewiness is just a phantom. It’s a chimera, a mirage, a mere fabrication of my imagination. There is no way to reach it.
Like the North Star, the perfect cookie hangs above the horizon, guiding me onward but forever out of reach.