Spectacularly Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

IMG_9614First of all, let it be known to one and all that I am not a food blogger. There are somewhere in the ballpark of a gazillion food bloggers out there who do an amazing job and have incredible skills both in the kitchen and in writing and in photographing their food…

…and I am not one of them.

I do, however, love to bake. This week when I mentioned these cookies on Facebook I had a hilariously disproportionate response to them—a response that was driven into two distinct camps:

A) OH, MY GOD, I LOVE OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES THEY ARE THE BEST THING SINCE A SHIRTLESS JASON MOMOA WALKED OUT OF THE OCEAN.

or,

B) OH, MY GOD, I DETEST OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES THEY ARE THE WORST THING SINCE CROCS.

IMG_9615A quick word to those of you who have deep-rooted trust issues concerning raisins: first of all, let’s just acknowledge that if this is your big stumbling block in life, you’ve had it pretty good so far. Secondly, those sweet, little wrinkled nuggets of deliciousness are substitutable. Instead of raisins, toss in chocolate chips. Or, chocolate chips and white chocolate chips. Or, chocolate chips and white chocolate chips and butterscotch chips. Or, if you want to go with something fruity instead of decadent, use cranberries (or, cranberries and white chocolate chips). Or dried, chopped apricots (or dried chopped mango, or papaya). What I’m saying here is that this recipe is made to modify.

Also, this recipe was sort of a happy accident. I had my mom’s recipe and some ideas that I found online for making them chewy, and then I didn’t have all the ingredients I needed, and then I flat-out forgot some ingredients (cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. Whoops!), so…

Yeah. In my kitchen, improvisation (and apparently forgetfulness) happens.

Luckily, it was a success. I had to fend off the hordes in order to have just three left to photograph, and I have one kid who is trying to bargain his way into me making them every damn day. So I salute you, serendipity, for tinkering in the kitchen with me, and with my gratitude, dive into the ingredient list.

Ingredients (in order of use):

1 C. butter, room temp

1 C. brown dark brown sugar

1/2 C. granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 egg yolk

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 T. pear glaze*

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. cornstarch

1 tsp. baking soda

1 3/4 C. flour

3 C. old-fashioned rolled oats

1 1/2 C. Raisins (or whatever)

*You could use molasses here, or maple syrup. Honestly, I kinda want to try peanut butter (smooth, and maybe blended with half the butter first?). I have a pantry full of pear glaze that I canned last summer, so I thought I’d give it a shot.

Get Down to Business:

Whip the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated, scraping the bowl as you need. Next, the vanilla. Next, the pear glaze. Beat until it’s nice and goopy (technical word. Impressive, I know). Work your way down the rest of the recipe, adding one ingredient at a time until incorporated. You’ll probably want to fold in the raisins with a rubber spatula.

Chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours.

Using your hands, roll dough into balls, pop back into the fridge for fifteen minutes (the colder the dough is going into the oven, the softer the cookie will be). Bake at 350 degrees (be sure to preheat oven) for 10-12 minutes. Cool on wire rack. 

Voila! Your cookies are done! With our family of six they were pretty much gone in less time than it took me to make them, but it was totally worth it. I hope you try ’em, and love ’em!

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MAKE IT, EAT IT: Breakfast Cookies

I’m always on the hunt for good breakfast foods that I can make ahead for the kiddos. Since we have to get up at the butt-crack of dawn to send them on their way for school, it’s super important to me that they eat something decent for breakfast – not just a quick sugary cereal.  But since I resemble something like a kind-of drunk, very cranky Shreck first thing in the morning, cooking can be a tricky feat. Making stuff the night before helps with that, a ton. (So does coffee. Loads of the stuff.)

These brekkie cookies are a fantastic solution to my brain-dead before six a.m. problem. Not only are they full of good-for-you fat, protein, and whole grains, but they taste amazing. And since they keep super-well, I can make them the day before (as long as I’m clever enough to hide them from the family, otherwise they tend to disappear). Hear me when I say: YOU NEED THESE COOKIES IN YOUR LIFE.

I’m posting a link to this recipe since I pretty much use it as-is. I only made a couple changes to the recipe (see below), and they were minimal, so it’s hardly fair to call this recipe mine.

MYNDI’S MODIFICATIONS:

*I use raw honey instead of brown sugar.

*I bake the cookies in a mini-muffin tray instead of on a cookie sheet.

*This isn’t really a modification, but I used coconut oil for my oil source.

Click here to give these lovelies a try. They really are fantastic, feel-good, good-for-you food.

Love,

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EAT IT: Pie to Die For

Last autumn I learned something new about my dad: he loves coconut cream pie. How I’d gone 35 years without knowing this little fact (especially when one of my favorite things to do is bake him goodies) is beyond me. I made it my mission to find a really great recipe – preferably meringue-free – and bring it to our Thanksgiving feast (along with his other favorite pie, pecan).

You guys, listen up. I have never liked coconut cream pie (or pecan for that matter). Sweetened coconut tastes weird to me and ugh, it’s so stringy. So when I stumbled on this recipe from Carina at Today’s Mama, I honestly didn’t think I’d dig it. In fact, I didn’t even try a bite of it until after I’d heard a gazillion compliments and saw that the pie was nearly gone. This pie isn’t good. It isn’t great, it isn’t divine, it isn’t lovely, it isn’t swoon-worthy.

THIS PIE IS THE KIND OF PIE WARS ARE STARTED OVER – EPIC WARS THAT BARDS THE WORLD OVER SING ABOUT CENTURIES LATER. THIS PIE IS THE PIE THAT ENDS ALL PIES.

A couple of things make all the difference. Finely shredded un-sweetened coconut. Coconut milk. And instead of toasting my own coconut for the top (and this is the only departure I made from her recipe), I used Dang Toasted Coconut Chips (which are utterly divine and ought to be a regular part of your snack-time repertoire).

Normally if I use a recipe and make a bunch of changes to it, I’ll just re-type the recipe here and link to the original, but I’m telling you this recipe is perfect as it is. Click on over to Carina’s, give this pie a try (poet, didn’t know it, yadda, yadda). You’ll totally be so so so so glad you did.

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