what i’ve got they used to call the blues. uh, yeah. perhaps generated by a relentless Sunday afternoon downpour? just a thought. nothing better than discovering one of the best cookie recipes ever to warm the heart and to make the entire house smell like heaven. amen.
Chocolate – Chunk Oatmeal Cookies with Pecans and Dried Cherries
a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated, with a tweak or two
makes 16 oversize chewy, buttery, decadent cookies
12 tablespoons organic butter, softened but still cool (i used salted butter and cut the salt in the original recipe in half)
1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar, packed
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups unbleached organic white flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup organic old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup pecans, chopped (recipe says to toast, but not my personal preference)
1 cup dried tart cherries
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (like Scharffen Berger), chopped into uneven chunks (about 3/4 cup)
heat oven to 350F.
line 2 large (18 by 12-inch) baking sheets with parchment paper.
in a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
in another medium bowl, combine the oats, pecans, cherries and chocolate chunks; set aside.
in a stand mixer with a flat beater attachment, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until there are no sugar lumps.
scrape down the sides of the bowl, then add the egg and vanilla.
beat on medium-low speed until fully incorporated.
with the mixer on low, add the flour mixture until just combined.
with the mixer still running on low, gradually add the oat mixture until just incorporated.
with a rubber spatula, give the dough one final stir to ensure there are no flour pockets and ingredients are evenly distributed.
divide the dough evenly into 16 portions, each about 1/4 cup.
roll the dough between your palms into balls about 2 inches in diameter.
stagger 8 balls on each baking sheet, spacing them about 2 1/2 inches apart.
using your hands, gently press each dough ball until it’s 1-inch thick.
bake for 12 minutes (in my oven, 10 minutes), then rotate the baking sheet and continue to bake until the cookies are medium brown and the edges have begun to set, but the centers are still soft (the cookies will seem underdone and will appear raw, wet and shiny in cracks), about another 8 to 10 minutes (in my oven, another 5 minutes).
cool cookies on baking sheets on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
using a wide metal spatula, transfer cookies to wire rack, and cool to room temperature.
down with a giant glass of organic whole milk. glorious!