Tamala Jones' Chocolate Chip, Pecan and Toffee Cookies

By: Kevin Bender

Gear up for holiday baking with Cooking Channel. Your favorite celebrities, chefs & Food People have opened their kitchens to share their best cookie recipes. From Cookie Monster's sugar cookies to Kelsey's Peppermint Meltaways, we'll keep you baking all season. Visit our All-Star Cookie Swap, then head over to FoodNetwork.com for great takes on holiday baking from Food Network chefs.  

You might know Tamala Jones from the #1 ABC Drama Series  Castle, where she plays the sassy, smart and totally sexy Medical Examiner Lanie Parish:

In real life, after suffering a life-threatening aneurysm at age 23, Tamala is a huge advocate of women’s health and educating her peers about the importance of annual check-ups and healthy lifestyle choices. Inspired by her grandmother, who is a foster parent, Jones spends her time off-camera with The Rosemary Children’s Services, one of the oldest West Coast charities that helps over 400 foster youth annually who have suffered abuse, neglect and abandonment. Tamala’s grandmother also sparked the actress’s passion for cooking, teaching Tamala her first recipe at just 14 years of age.

Speaking of cooking, Tamala's recipe for Chocolate Chip, Pecan and Toffee Cookies has us buzzing: these sweet treats deserve a spot on your holiday dessert spread.

These cookies are fantastic on their own, but sublime fresh from the oven and paired with a tall glass of milk. Here is the story of how this delicious cookie came to be:

"Well it all started when I almost burned down the kitchen making homemade french fries after school. I was 14 years old, just starting to learn how to cook. I turned the grease on to make my french fries then I left the kitchen but then got distracted watching television. I forgot about turning the oil on, and next thing I know the smoke detector was going crazy. I rush into the kitchen and there was a flame on top of the hot grease. Of course in a panic, me, the bright one, throws water on the flaming grease and then we had a mini fire in the kitchen. My mother comes in and sees this fire, she grabs some flour and throws it over the fire which put it out, then she threatened to put me out.

"I tried to clean up the mess before my grandmother could see it, but she has that wisdom of the old and knew something wasn't right in her kitchen. I had to come clean and surprisingly she was not upset at all. She explained that only when you're a pro can you leave the kitchen while cooking because you know when to come back.

"Grandma decided to teach me some basics in food, she told me what ingredients to grab, how to mix it and before I knew it I was baking cookies and they were goooood!!!! The more I baked the better I got in the kitchen. This recipe is the first thing I learned how to prepare. Enjoy!"

Get Tamala's recipe:   Chocolate Chip, Pecan and Toffee Cookies

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