Sunday, March 9, 2014

Cheery Cherry & Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

It's hard to beat the original recipe for oatmeal cookies. You know the one, the recipe printed on the Quaker Oats box. There's a reason that recipe still appears on the iconic, tubular container - it's darned good! Nonetheless, a recipe's honored, classic status doesn't mean it can't be tweaked a little, added to and messed with, just for fun. 

These cookies were baked to share with the guys working on the construction project at the house. Shipyard workers have enjoyed my home-baked cookies, so why not a construction crew? This batch of oatmeal cookies incorporated dried cherries and white chocolate chips for an unexpected taste treat. Good decision! While these may not have been the prettiest cookies ever seen in my kitchen, they were delicious and well-received by the crew. It's a good sign when not even a crumb remains on the platter. Now I'd better come up with another cookie inspiration for next week.

A cookie scoop helps to shape cookies of uniform size, and to keep your fingers from turning into sticky blobs... unless you need an excuse to nibble raw cookie dough.  

Cookies on the left were dropped from a cookie scoop and baked, the ones on the right were flattened with a fork prior to baking. The taste and texture remained the same, only the appearance was altered.

Cheery Cherry & Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
based on the classic Quaker Oats recipe 
Yield: approx 3 1/2 dozen

1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled oats (not instant)
1 cup dried cherries (or cranberries)
1 cup white chocolate chips
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Use a large bowl and beat butter and both sugars until creamy (you can do this by hand but a stand mixer makes it much easier). 
  3. Add eggs and vanilla and mix to thoroughly incorporate. 
  4. Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; add to the butter mix and combine well. 
  5. Add oats, cherries and chips; stir in to mix well.
  6. Use a cookie scoop to form balls or drop dough by generous, rounded tablespoonfuls onto ungreased or silpat-covered cookie sheets.
  7. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown. Take care not to over bake to medium-brown or the cookies will be too dry when cooled.
  8. Let the cookies rest for a few minutes on the cookie sheets to firm up a bit, then use a flat spatula to remove to a wire rack. Cool completely before storing, tightly covered. The cookies will keep for several days and are reported to freeze well (but they never last long enough to freeze in my kitchen or galley!)

1 comment:

  1. RL thinks 2 cookies = a great breakfast, better than oatmeal-in-a-bowl. LOL


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