The oddity of food holidays, who decides what food gets a special designation and the odd times that those days appear in the calendar of celebrated comestibles is a common and whimsical lament in our blog. But this particular day, Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, is no mystery to us – among these fanciful food fetes, this particular festivity makes perfect sense.
Unlike most popular foods, the Chocolate Chip Cookie has an identifiable lineage – its creator and its rise to popularity are known quantities. Arguably it is the Great American Cookie and, during World War II, for many soldiers, it was America in one semi-sweet bite.
Restaurateur Ruth Wakefield created the cookie as an accompaniment to ice cream to serve in the Toll House restaurant that she ran with her husband in Whitman, Massachusetts. There are any number of myths about how the semi-sweet chocolate landed in the cookie dough, but it was most likely the result of planned recipe development. (You can read more on the subject in Carolyn Wyman’s, “Great American Chocolate Chip Cookie Book.”)
The cookie famously caught the attention of Marjorie Husted (Betty Crocker) and then Nestle, and then the nation. All of this was happening in the 1930’s in the midst of the Great Depression, when a single bite of richness was an indulgence extraordinaire. I’m no scholar or psychologist of history, but I suspect that the cookie came to represent everything that Americans held dear about their country as a land of plenty, of hope, of shared opportunity and prosperity. Whatever it was, this cookie became an essential morale booster and taste of home as it found its way into mess kits and gift packages for soldiers who crossed the oceans blue to fight fascism and oppression and, thus, earned a special place in the pantheon of American icons.
Today, we take the cookie for granted, and toss its name around without regard to quality. Just walk down the grocery cookie aisle and you’ll find hundreds of hard little discs called chocolate chip cookie. Some are better than others, and a few might achieve greatness – I don’t know about all those cookies. What I do know is that nothing touches the special longing of my inner cookie monster like a rich, made-with-love-by-real-bakers kind of Chocolate Chip Cookie.
At the Tomato Head we’re committed to cookie equality for all, so when we do chocolate chip we do it in all sorts of ways for all sorts of people.
Of course we serve a good old-fashioned cookie made from a traditional recipe that comes loaded with chocolate chips in a rich brown sugar batter that will transport you to the long-gone days of sneaking bits of dough from wooden mixing spoons in Grandma’s kitchen. That goodness also pervades our Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie and our Vegan recipe, too; both of which give the same kind of memory thrill and homey flavor that comes from our original recipe.
But if you’re really celebrating the day, then you may want to engage in the great American pastime of making the good even better by trying a bite of our Triple Chocolate Chip Cookie. The first bite and delicate crunch of this chocolate bomb gives way to a gooey, brownie-like center that bursts with a perfect medley of milk chocolate, white chocolate, and semi-sweet chips. And if you’re feeling really excitable, go ahead and grab a “Rock Your World” cookie which combines chocolate chips with walnuts for a big mouthful of happiness.
Today, throw caution to the wind and grab a friend for a cookie date. It’s a tasty way to show some love and treat yourself to a little bite of American history – and there’s enough diversity in our Chocolate Chip Cookie selection to make everyone feel great!