Preheat the oven to 375°F. Place an oven rack in the middle position. Line three large baking sheets with parchment paper.
Place the flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Stir in the 2 cups chocolate chips and nuts, if using. In another bowl, beat the butter, sugars and vanilla until well combined and lightened, about 3 to 4 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Add the flour/chocolate chip mixture and mix until just combined.
Set 2 Tbsp. amounts of the dough, each formed into a loose ball, on the baking sheets, spacing them about three inches apart. (During baking the cookies will spread and that will give them room to do so without touching.) Set six to seven more chocolate chips on each cookie dough ball, gently pushing them in so they adhere. (As the cookies bake and spread, these chocolate chips will melt and settle on the surface, giving the cookies and even more delicious look.)
Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, for 11 to 12 minutes, or until light golden brown and cooked through. Cool on a rack 15 minutes, and then enjoy some cookies while still warm. Once the remaining cookies have cooled to room temperature, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks, if they last that long!
Note: If your flour has been sitting around awhile, in the bag or the tin you stored it in, it’s likely to have compacted. So give the flour several good stirs with a whisk or heavy spoon before measuring, or sift before using, to incorporate some air into it and give it a similar consistency it did when you first opened the bag.