Thursday, September 1, 2011

a theme of oatmeal

I've been eating a lot of it lately.  Every morning, in fact: a warm bowl of oatmeal with toast.  At first it was because we had a big box of instant packets in the pantry.  Wanting to be thrifty, I figured I'd just eat the stuff and save on cereal.

After a while, I developed a taste for it.

Now I've moved on to a big drum of the stuff nestled in the lower cabinet lazy susan.

So oatmeal cookies seemed like the right back to school fall cookie recipe.  Karen tells me that it's a new tradition at their house: a new cookie for the new school year.

Before we get to the recipe, I'll tell you that I'm something of an oatmeal cookie aficionado.  Picky, even.  Not so crunchy as to be crumbly - but not so soft that they bend in half when held in your hand.  I like cinnamon in them, and raisins.  Which is weird, because I don't normally like anything lumpy in bread or cookies or ice cream (raisins, nuts, candy that doesn't dissolve like skittles or gummy bears - totally unacceptable).  But raisins in oatmeal cookies?  Yes, yes, and yes.

I also don't like chocolate chips in oatmeal cookies.  I have reasons: namely that the chocolate seems to make it not an oatmeal cookie, somehow.  But that's neither here nor there, because this recipe has lots and lots of room for interpretation.

But I think that one word is true, no matter what you choose to add or delete: DELICIOUS.

Whimsy's Oatmeal Cookies

2 sticks softened butter (regular butter, not unsalted - and soft, NOT MELTED)
1 1/2 cups packed golden brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 large eggs
2 cups regular oats (not quick)
1 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins

(alternate additions: 1 cup raisins, 1 cup chopped nuts, 1 cup chocolate chips, 1 cup shredded coconut)

Preheat oven to 350.  In large bowl of electric mixer, beat butter, brown sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy (about 1 minute).  Add eggs and mix until thoroughly incorporated.  Add oats, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.

Mix on low speed until blended.  Add optional ingredients at this time.  I always add raisins, and have occasionally also put in the coconut--- pretty delicious.  Mix on medium speed until incorporated.

Drop batter by heaping teaspoons 1 1/2 inches apart on baking sheet.  Bake for 10-13 minutes or until golden brown.  Mine usually take 11 minutes.  Cookies will feel soft but will firm up as they cool.  Let stand on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to racks to cool.  Makes about 45 cookies.

Happy September!


Anonymous said...

Oatmeal cookie dough is my very favorite in the entire world. I may or may not have on more than one occasion made a batch of oatmeal cookie dough purely for the pleasure of eating (not baking) back in my single/living alone days.

I also agree that chocolate chips don't belong in oatmeal cookies, they belong in chocolate chip cookies. I do like coconut in my oatmeal cookies sometimes though.

Alicia said...

I do not understand why you would consume an oatmeal cookie without chocolate chips. Not that it's as weird as consuming peanut butter cookies (with or without chocolate chips... does anyone ever put chocolate chips in PB cookies? hmmm...), but still.

I am with you on the non-dissolving candies in ice cream. Anything that gets hard (the caramel in Snickers is the worst): blech.

Amy said...

LOVE oatmeal raisin cookies - my favorite, in fact. And never put choc chips in there. Ew.

Unrelated topic - is the GMBOA going to make a comeback?