I’m the world’s worst cooking buddy. Matt is so patient with me, planning our recipes, texting over the shopping list ahead of time, conscious of my reluctant cook status, and leading me by the hand cautiously, like a trainer might treat a skittish horse.

Matt is a cook whisperer.

Yet, for all his forward planning and gentle coaxing, every week I’m still rushing out to the bodega at the last minute, missing some crucial ingredient because I’ve been too unorganized to go to the grocery store like a normal person. (In a single weekend, Matt has already made two chocolate cakes, pickled his leftover veggies, and started a Christmas pudding – don’t you hate high achievers?)

This time, I was hunting down vanilla extract and chocolate chips (the latter a fairly essential ingredient in the chocolate chip cookies we planned to make). The bodega had neither. Obviously. And as I scoured the shelves looking for viable alternatives, at one point I seriously considered buying an actual box of cookies and picking the chips out.

Thankfully, I regained my sanity for long enough to settle on a couple of bags of M&Ms instead. I could live without the vanilla. I added almonds to the mix because I happened to have some at home.

The verdict? This was 100% the easiest, quickest thing we’ve made so far. We were finished and already doing the washing up in only slightly more time than it takes to buy a box of bodega cookies. Zachary Schmahl – watch your back.

These pics, by the way, are Matt’s, in case you’re wondering where the M&Ms are. I told you he was so much more organized that I am.



(Makes about 12 cookies)

1 1/4 cup sugar (you can mix brown and granulated, but I just went all brown because I have a ton left over after making the killer carrot bacon a couple of weeks ago)

1 stick butter

1 tsp salt

1 stick butter

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

A little nutmeg

1 egg
2 packets M&Ms

Sprinkle of sliced almonds


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Melt the butter in a pan and add the sugar. Cook until caramelized and smelling delicious.

3. Put all the dry ingredients in a bowl (minus the M&Ms and almonds), add the melted sugar and butter, and stir well.

4. Whisk the egg in a cup and, once the cookie mix has cooled, add the egg to the bowl. Add a little more flour if the mix is too wet to handle.

5. Add the M&Ms and the almonds, and more salt to taste.

6. Roll out the dough into a thick sausage shape and cut into half-inch slices.

7. Flatten each slice into a cookie shape and place on a baking sheet. Leave plenty of space between each cookie because they’ll expand.

8. Cook for 15-20 minutes, until golden and beginning to harden slightly.

9. Cool, then take to the bar for your friends so you don’t eat the whole damn lot in one sitting.

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