There will probably be quite a lot of cookie recipes over the next few weeks. Chris' sister was in a pretty bad car accident and it looks like she's going to be spending the next several months in the hospital recovering. Chris and I are too far away to do much other than talk on the phone with her, but I'm planning to send care packages starting with the first one this weekend. The problem of course is finding baked goods that won't suffer too much from cross-country shipping. I'm going to start with cookies, but the only other thing I can think of that ships well are quick breads, so I might send versions of those as well. If anyone has other suggestions, please let me know.
If you've followed the blog at all recently, you know I've been looking for a good oatmeal raisin cookie recipe and I have found one that I can get behind. Soft and chewy with the flavors of raisins, cinnamon, and lightly toasted walnuts, the cookies have a nice texture and flavor from a balance of white and brown sugar, and plenty of oatmeal to give them a nice chew -- definitely heads and shoulders above the last couple of oatmeal raisin cookie recipes I have tried.
I found the recipe on Cookie Madness and didn't mess with it much. I used 1/2 white flour and 1/2 whole wheat pastry flour, subbed toasted walnuts for the pecans, and didn't plump the raisins. I'm sure that making the recipe just as she posted it would have been just as good, and now I am confident that I finally have a good recipe for this basic cookie. I still have a couple of other versions I want to try, but that's for another day.
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour or white whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 stick unsalted butter, cut up, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar — firmly packed
1 large egg
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups oats, old fashioned
3/4 cups raisins
1/3 cup chopped, toasted pecans or walnuts
Preheat oven to 350° degrees F.
Thoroughly together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
In a mixing bowl, beat butter and both sugars *just* until creamy — don’t overcream. Add egg and vanilla and beat just until egg is mixed in.
Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and stir just until mixed. Stir in oats, then stir stir in raisins and pecans.
Using a tablespoon measure, scoop up rounded tablespoons and shape into large balls of about 1 ¼ inch. Drop 2 1/2 inches apart on ungreased or Silpat lined baking sheets.
Bake 12-14 minutes, one sheet at a time, on center rack.
Remove from oven; let cookies sit on baking sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.