Making chocolate chip cookies with your kids is, I believe, the pinnacle of mom-hood. The ingredients are readily on hand, and any rainy afternoon you're sure to have some butter, sugar, and flour lying around when little hands get antsy. In fact, my first cooking experience involved a wooden spoon and a bowl full of cookie dough. When I was a kid we didn't worry about the eggs. This was way before Ben and Jerry thought of egg-less cookie-dough for ice-cream, and I admit that I always sample the dough, and the cake batter, and the brownie batter... I can't resist.

And thus began a love affair with chocolate chip cookies that my kids now share with me. We mix, we shape, we taste, and ultimately, we bond. It's pure magic when the smell of cookies starts to fill up the house. It's a memory, a link in our family chain, just like the ones I made years ago, and it's moments like these when I realize that things haven't changed all that much.

I will concede that it's still magical when you bake up some chewy dry cookies with your little helpers, but consider the possibilities when perfection is involved. Crispy on the outside, gooey in the middle, and yummy like you dreamed of once ten years after you got used to the cookies from a bag. Yes, it exists: the Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie, from our family's kitchen to yours. Just follow the picture instructions, and please don't leave out any of the sugar. Remember, it's magic.

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