I have a lot of jeans hanging in my closet, but I always choose “that pair”, they just feel right. I have at least 30 wooden spoons next to my stove, but without thinking, I always choose the same one. My favorite wooden spoon is burnt and chipped – I don’t care, it’s my “go to” spoon. I also have way too many knives, they all sit nicely in a container on my counter. I don’t know who I’m trying to impress with all these knives – I reach for the same one every time I cook. I also have my “go to” dessert – cookies. Yes, cookies, not just any cookies … cookies made with real butter.
What? Were you thinking that because I’m a chef I should be baking up something extravagant? Listen, cookies make people happy! Crème brûlée might woo some, others may insist on some delicate French pastry, but I’ve never met a soul who passes on a good cookie, it’s simply unAmerican. Friends, family, and clients know … I don’t share my chocolate chip cookie recipe. I can’t, let’s just leave it at that. I will, however, share with you my oatmeal cookie recipe.
Toasted Oat Cranberry Cookies
By Chef Louise Mellor
Makes 2 dozen cookies
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 scant teaspoon of kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
Zest of 1 orange
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup white granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup orange flavored dried cranberries (or plain dried cranberries)
½ cup toasted walnut pieces, roughly chopped
Preheat oven to 350°F. Adjust racks to center and lower third of oven.
Spread oats evenly on lined cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes –remove from oven and allow oats to cool completely.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, kosher salt, nutmeg and cinnamon. With a fork, lightly mix together to combine.
In bowl of standing mixer with paddle attachment, combine orange zest, room temperature butter and sugars.
Cream the sugars and butter on medium for approximately 2-3 minutes, scraping down sides half way through.
Reduce mixer speed down to low and slowly add in eggs and vanilla.
Continue to mix for about 2 minutes or until eggs are completely combined.
On low, add flour mixture all at once and continue to mix on low until almost completely combined – about 30 seconds.
Add in oats, nuts and cranberries, and mix for about 30 seconds until just combined. Do not over mix.
Place bowl in refrigerator for approximately 20 minutes to allow cookie dough to set slightly.
Line cookie sheet with parchment paper and scoop out dough with a 1.5-ounce cookie scoop.
Bake at 350°F for 12-14 minutes or until cookies are golden around edges.
Cool cookies on wire cookie rack and store in airtight container.
baking, Christmas, cookie, holiday
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