This is a guest post.
Once upon a time in Whitman, Mass, Ruth Graves Wakefield accidentally ruined virtually every dieter’s dream in America. You see, Ruth invented the chocolate chip cookie, and thousands of gained pounds later, her invention still epitomizes temptation and addicting delights.
Ruth was a dietician who often gave lectures about food. When her husband and she bought a roadside inn, the Toll House Inn, in 1930, it came as no historical surprise that her restaurant became famous for its fantastic food and generous proportions. She not only served an extra helping of the entree for people to take home but also an extra dose—serving, that is—of her desserts. Her famous cookie was a continual favorite.
Ruth often ran out of baker’s chocolate, and when none was immediately available, she substituted chips of semi-sweet chocolate.
When Nestlé purchased the recipe in exchange for a lifetime supply of their semi-sweet morsels, Nestlé stated that Ruth used the chocolate in her dough, hoping it would liquify and mix. Obviously, they didn’t, and the extraordinary cookie was born.
However, employees of the Toll House Inn state another version: Ruth Wakefield was an accomplished chef and baker. She knew chocolate’s properties well enough that she expected the chocolate to not liquify but only melt from the heat, keeping its taste separate from the dough’s.
Shall we pause for a curse on the flavor of the dough? That’s sufficient; let us continue.
Two employees stated that the dough was originally for sugar cookies. The vibrations from the large electric mixer dislodged the chocolate stored on a shelf above, and the mixer ground the fallen chocolate into bits. Ruth wanted to discard the entire batch of tainted dough, but alas, an employee allegedly convinced her to try baking it instead.
Ruth’s cursed cookie gained in popularity faster than she could bake them. They were devoured by her patrons at the restaurant and at home. Her customers shipped them overseas to our brave soldiers in care packages. Those soldiers shared their bounty, and soon Ruth was inundated with letters of request from all over the country and the world.
Her basic recipe of sugar, flour, butter or margarine and chocolate chips is still printed on every package of Nestlé semi-sweet chocolate morsels, and virtually every maker of semi-sweet chocolate in the world advertises their own twist on the infamous creation. Bakeries offer their own versions with raisins, nuts, coated chocolate bits, and different kinds of chocolate.
Try as many of us might to abstain from delving in head-first into a batch of freshly baked delights, their temptation is oft too strong. From the dough to the chip to the baked confection, chocolate chip cookies are still a world-wide favorite and probably will continue to be one for generations.
Ruth Graves Wakefield lived from 1903 to 1977, and her Toll House cookie—the original chocolate chip cookie—continues to pay tribute to her baking ability and courage to take a risk.
Join the legions who pay tribute to her creation: Raise a tall glass of ice-cold milk and dunk a Toll House chocolate chip cookie in honor of the Toll House Inn, Ruth Wakefield, and her dessert cookie. After all, as the saying goes, ‘If you can’t beat them, join them!’
Don’t worry. You can bake another batch for family and friends. We won’t tell. We’ll probably join you!
JC Ryan is a freelance writer for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers helps people determine if an online education is right for them and helps them search for online degrees that can help them reach their goals.