Uncommon Knowledge

Uncommon Knowledge: Who Invented the Chocolate Chip Cookie?

March 8, 2013

It’s hard to imagine a time before the chocolate chip cookie, but the innovator who brought enlightenment to that dark age was Ruth Wakefield. Educated in food science, she left academia when she and her husband purchased a renovated toll house outside of Boston, and opened an inn and restaurant. In 1930, she was preparing a batch of chocolate cookies when she discovered she was out of cocoa powder. Thinking fast, she broke up a bar of semi-sweet chocolate and stirred it into the dough, expecting it to melt in the oven. Instead, she pulled out a new culinary innovation: the “Toll House Crunch Cookie.” The cookies were an instant hit grew so popular that when a chocolate company began producing the first chocolate chips, they asked if they could publish Wakefield’s recipe on the package. She agreed-in exchange for a lifetime supply of chocolate.

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