Urban legend…ary choc chip cookies


Neiman Marcus' Choc Chip Cookie

A few years ago, I saw an email that spoke about a woman who had purchased a chocolate chip cookie recipe from a Department store. In the email I read, the recipe was “unfairly” bought from Woolworths, a high-end retail store in South Africa. In my chilhood innocence and naivety, I believed the story. I insisted to my mother that we should make the cookies in order to stand against the injustices of capitalism and fat-cat selfishness. She said no.

I recently came across an article (thanks that spoke about this well known urban-legend. Apparently, a few years before the Woolworths incident, the same stunt was pulled, but with Neiman Marcus.

Neiman Marcus clearly has fantastic, cookie-loving PR people. They released the recipe on their website ( and asked people to freely distribute it. So here it is:


1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1 cup light brown sugar

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1-1/2 teaspoon instant espresso coffee powder

1-1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips



1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. That’s 150 degrees celsius for our Metric friends.

2. Cream the butter with the sugars using an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy (approximately 30 seconds).

3. Beat in the egg and the vanilla extract for another 30 seconds.

4. In a mixing bowl, sift together the dry ingredients and beat into the butter mixture at low speed for about 15 seconds. Stir in the espresso coffee powder and chocolate chips.

5. Using a 1-ounce scoop or a 2-tablespoon measure, drop cookie dough onto a greased cookie sheet about 3 inches apart. Gently press down on the dough with the back of a spoon to spread out into a 2 inch circle.

6. Bake for about 20 minutes or until nicely browned around the edges. Bake a little longer for a crispier cookie.


Yield: 2 dozen cookies



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