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Esurientes - The Comfort Zone

Friday, June 30, 2006

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:

Oatmeal Cookies
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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  • i read your muesli post. no shit-ake? bananas are $2?

    i suppose this is one of the benefits of living in a tropical country ... bananas are about RM3-5 a bunch.

    the muesli sounds delicious and filling...i'll definitely try it :)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7/01/2006 09:13:00 pm  

  • Wow. That little blurb about trying to be like a guy's mother is creepy and hilarious at the same time. I laughed out loud and then when I thought about it a bit more, was freaked out.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7/01/2006 11:20:00 pm  

  • Speaking of cookies and childhood, I just tried out the tim tam eating method you talked about in an earlier post. O. M. G. So. Awesome.

    Sadly I have a sore throat so can't really be eating that much chocolate. I can't wait to get better now, though.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7/03/2006 10:10:00 am  

  • Wow, only ¾c of butter? My usual recipe that uses 3 cups of oats uses 2 cups of butter. That's plenty to allow for ungreased pans.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7/03/2006 01:17:00 pm  

  • You had me laughing! And I can SO relate to the cookie sheet question. When I was first out of school, I bought a set of baking dishes at a state fair -- probably paid through the nose for them from one of those hawkers. But they were/ARE great, never ever need greasing or parchment or anything. Then I lost a cookie sheet (how?where?does one lose a cookie sheet for heavens sakes?) and spent boo-koo bucks on a worthless replacement. I'm even thinking of returning to that state fair (300 miles away) to see if by chance the same pans are for sale. (There's no brand name, no marks of any kind on the pieces so can't go the Internet route.) Anyway, there ARE cookie sheets that don't need greasing and parchment. I sure would like mine back! ;-)

    By Blogger Alanna Kellogg, at 7/10/2006 11:28:00 pm  

  • These are probably my favorite oatmeal cookies --


    I used dried blueberries instead of chocolate chips -- because I had them, but I like to tell myself that they're healthy that way.

    By Blogger mathomhouse, at 7/25/2006 02:08:00 am  

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