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Donna Steele has not died in vain! She may have been pushed down the stairs by a husband drunk on Storz and trans-fat treats, but the creator of my favorite childhood cookie has found a second life in 2008. Thousands of you have asked for her chocolate-chip recipe—-well, okay, only six of you have, but I bet through the power of online recipe-swapping, those Criso-heavy cookies have already killed eight in Bhutan.

So to better serve those who have been afraid to ask—-or forbidden to ask by health-conscious loved ones—-I’ve opted to post Steele’s gooey, crispy, wholly hydrogenated cookies right here. Don’t try to substitute butter for Crisco or quick oats for the rolled variety. The cookies won’t taste the same. Trust me on that one.

Donna Steele’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup shortening
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 cups rolled oats
1 tsp vanilla
12 oz. chocolate ships (semi-sweet)

1. Sift flour and salt, and set aside
2. Mix baking soda with 1 tsp hot water, and set aside
3. Cream the shortening
4. Add sugars, a little at a time, and mix with shortening until fluffy
5. Add eggs, and mix
6. Gradually add baking soda mixture
7. Add flour and rolled oats (you will need to hand-mix after adding the oats)
8. Add vanilla
9. Add chips
10. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Remove when golden brown.
11. Enjoy without remorse!

Photo by roboppy