His Mother's Oatmeal Cookies
Still with the oats theme. Who can guess who's got a big old bag of horse chaff in their pantry??
I ordered a girly cookbook, "Culinarytherapy - The Girl's Guide to Food for Every Mood", for a friend and was leafing through it this week. I felt like I hadn't baked anything for ages (patently untrue, but I'm happy to listen to my feelings) so this recipe for oatmeal cookies appealed. I had all the ingredients so I didn't have to step outside the house which, in the current Melbourne winter weather, is a Very Good Thing.
This oatmeal cookie recipe is found in the chapter called "When you're feeding the flame" or Dating Dishes. The story behind the name of these cookies goes thus:
"There's just something about an oatmeal cookie that says 'there, there now, honey, come and sit on my lap and tell Mommy where it hurts'. So go ahead, make a batch of these cookies, and then kiss it and make it all better."
Yeah, ok. Anyway, this mixture is easy to make up, but seemed a bit sloppy. I added more oats just in case. I dolloped blobs of the mixture onto the ungreased baking sheets it specified. And here's the rub: Beware of any recipe that involves ungreased baking sheets. No good can come of it. If you imagined that sentence spoken in a Muppets "Monsterpiece Theatre" voice with thunder in the background followed by wild cackling laughter, then you've got the idea. Every single cookie stuck hard and fast to the sheets and I had to attack them with knives and spatulas. There were many casualties in the fight. I'd like to say I disposed of them, but truth is that many broken bits ended up in my mouth.
So, yes, cookies that had crunchy edges and insides that were so soft they wanted to fall through the bars of the cooling rack. I think the cooking time was way off. In retrospect, 10-12 minutes wasn't enough, and I ended up with raw cookies. I've just come back from putting them back in the oven for another 10 minutes to crisp them up. They didn't have the heft I imagined; they're more of the light and delicate biscuit school. They have a good flavour, but they're very sweet - a bit too much for my taste. That was even with reducing the amounts of brown sugar, white sugar and maple syrup it requested. But with a few tweaks this could be a good recipe. Not sure I'd repeat it though - there are many thousands of oatmeal cookie recipes out there I can try next time.
Read on for the recipe:
adapted from 'Culinarytherapy - A Girl's Guide to Food for Every Mood.'
3/4 cup margarine/butter
3/4 firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 granulated sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda (bicarb)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup raisins, nuts and/or chocolate chips.
-Cream the butter, sugars and syrup in a large bowl. Add the egg, 1/4 cup water and vanilla and beat well.
-Add oats, flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon and stir to combine.
-Stir in the raisins, nuts or chocolate chips.
-Drop the dough by teaspoons onto GREASED baking sheets and bake at 350 (175) for 15-20 minutes. Let cool on wire rack.
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