I’ve been baking quite a bit lately, but I haven’t gone through nearly as much work as it may appear. I’ll let you in on a little secret: I mixed the dough for the Doubly Chocolate Cookies and the Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies at the end of December. Seriously. If you peruse my freezer, you’ll find frozen balls of dough, a handful of baked cookies and well-wrapped brownies (also already baked) alongside the standard bags of frozen vegetables and frozen meats one expects to find in the freezer.
Why do I do this? My motives are mixed: 1) Freezing desserts, both baked and unbaked, assists greatly in portion control. Let’s face it, a plate of cookies sitting on the counter is going to get consumed in short order and 2) Sometimes you want a cookie or two just out of the oven, but you don’t want to go through all the trouble to make the dough and clean up. This is fantastic when you just have to have cookies and tea at 9:30 on a Wednesday night.
If you want to freeze dough, portion it out onto a cookie sheet and pop it in the freezer for 30-60 minutes to allow the dough to firm up. You can place them close together, because they’re not going to spread. I like to line my cookie sheet with foil or wax paper to make clean up easier. One the dough balls are firm, pack them in a freezer bag, squeeze out as much air as possible and seal. The dough will stay fresh for a few months – I’ve gone up to three months with no problems. When you want a few cookies, heat the oven according to the original recipe instructions, place the frozen dough on a cookie sheet and pop it in the oven. There’s no need to thaw – just bake for 1-2 minutes longer and enjoy!