Chip and the kids always say that I cannot cook when I am upset or worried. Truth be told, they have been in food-misery because of me for a while now. Burnt chicken, nasty tacos and school and work lunches missing food and goodies. It’s going to be better. Today was somewhat of a turning point so I thought I would make oatmeal cookies. Isn’t that what everyone does?
Guess what? Baking does not require happiness, innovation or creativity in order to follow a recipe to success. I know, I have pontificated on this in the past and caught quite a rash from many of you bakers out there. But, you all did admit, you follow the recipe to specificity. No deviation, no rounding, no feeling your way. A few additions or substitutions? Perhaps. So here is what I call Misery Oatmeal Cookies. Give it a shot.
What you need:
- 1 cup butter softened
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract ( I went a little heavier)
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 cups oats (not instant)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup raisins
Kick it up? Add a ¼ cup of finely shredded coconut (reduced fat/unsweetened) and a heaping 2 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder.
Optional: 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, apple pie spice or 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves. You can add chopped apricots or dried cranberry too! Chocolate chips can be added, of course
What to do:
Preheat oven to 325°F. line a cookie sheet with Parchment paper.
Cream butter and both sugars together in an electric mixer and mix. Be sure to scrap g down the sides of the bowl occasionally. Should take about 3-5 minutes.
Add salt, eggs, vanilla, and your spices of choice. Then add baking soda, and cocoa powder, and mix until blended. Fold in oats and flour, then add optional goodies.
Cover and chill at least 1 hour.
Roll dough into small balls and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake each batch 10 to 12 minutes, let cool on cookie sheet 1 minute before placing on a rack to cool completely.
Today I learned that happy or sad, mix or match, cookies can indeed heal not like a lasagna, but close. That coupled with a hug from my mother did the trick.
PS she also gave me a box of my favorite Easter candy: Russell Stover chocolate covered marshmallow eggs!