Friday, April 16, 2010

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies : A Classic

Oh, poor oatmeal cookie. You never were my favorite...until now.

Whenever I had the choice, I always picked the chocolate chip cookie. Silky and smooth, with just enough semisweet chocolate to make you swoon...none of that thick "oatiness" (yes, I just made that ridiculous word up). And raisins? Who needs raisins when you can have chocolate? Seriously. My sister always went for oatmeal raisin, and I never really understood why. I'm not a huge fan of oatmeal, and oats in general weren't really my thing.
That is, until I discovered, oatmeal scotchies a while ago. And as they say, "Once you go oat, you can't leave the boat". Or something along those lines. 

I also have to factor in the fact that I had the hugest, most amazing cookie ever when I lived in New York at a café called Grey Dog--eating one cookie would probably make you full for at least a good half of the day. But it's one of those treats where you can't stop even though you know you've gone way past what your stomach can tolerate. I started to see where my sister was coming from, choosing to have the oatmeal raisin cookie. However, I'd never taken it a step further and made them myself. If you can have butterscotch chips instead of raisins, why bother?

I had a suitcase full of such excuses, but a weekend trip out to Normandy made me change my mind. Wanting to bake a batch of cookies to bring along for the car ride, I settled on oatmeal cookies, thinking they would be sturdier than chewy chocolate chip cookies. The next question that came up was which extra something I should add. Chocolate chips? Butterscotch chips? The tradition seeker in me came right out and voted for raisins. Raisins it was, and with my trusty ATK cookbook in hand (or under my arm, seeing how big it is), I was off to the land of raisins in cookies.

Will I ever look back? No way. I'm a chocolate chip cookie kind of girl, but oatmeal raisin is right up there alongside it. I guess every girl wants to end up like her older sister.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
adapted from the America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book
makes about 24 large cookies

1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 TS baking powder
1/2 TS salt
1/4 TS ground nutmeg
1 TS cinnamon (not in the original recipe)
16 TB (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 c. packed light brown sugar
1 c. granulated sugar
2 large eggs
3 c. old-fashioned rolled oats
1 1/2 c. raisins (I plumped them a little first by steeping them in hot water)

Preheat oven to 325°F / 160°C. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.

Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars together with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 6 minutes (I did this by hand). Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined, about 30 seconds.

Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add flour mixture until combined, about 30 seconds. Mix in the oats and raisins until just incorporated.

Working with about 3 TB of dough at a time, roll the dough into balls and lay them on the prepared baking sheets, spaced about 2 inches apart. Flatten to a 3/4-inch thickness using your palm.

Bake cookies until edges are set and beginning to brown but centers are still soft and puffy, 22 to 25 minutes, switching and rotating the baking sheets halfway through baking.

Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes, then serve warm or transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
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Barbara said...

Are they nice and chewy? That's the way I love an oatmeal cookie to be.
I have a long time recipe for a cc cookie that has oatmeal in it...was always a favorite with the kids, but I must admit I do prefer a plain cc cookie, no nuts.

And you're right, they don't travel well. Chocolate gets all over the steering wheel!

Lucie said...

Barbara: The are perfectly chewy! I don't think I'd have a cookie any other way :)

Mary said...

Isn't this a wonderful recipe. I use currants instead of raisins and one of my daughters uses dried cranberries. We really like this version of oatmeal cookies. I hope you are having a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

claudia said...

they look also very good!

Cinnamon-Girl said...

I've come to love oatmeal cookies too! I appreciate the flavor of oats much more now than when I was younger. What a yummy treat to have on a car ride! They look perfect and delicious.

Paris Pastry said...

Thursday I had to bake cookies for an elementary school; I baked white chocolate - butterscotch, chocolate chip & oatmeal - raisin. I preferred the chocolate chip, but all the kids went gaga over the oatmeal raisin!!

Snooky doodle said...

these are my favourites, yummy

Anonymous said...

I just baked oatmeal cookies too! They have a texture and chew that so craveable and yeah I'm with you on adding chocolate into these cookies! I baked mine with nutella and bailey's yesterday.

Lucie said...

Mary: Currants are a great switch-up--I'll be trying this!

Claudia: I'll make you some!

Cinnamon Girl: I guess liking oats in cookies comes with which case I have no problem whatsoever with aging :)

Paris Pastry: I would've gone right for the white chocolate butterscotch. I actually think I would have brought a shovel to keep all the little kids away and take them all for myself.

Vicky: Mmm. Now you're making me hungry.

grace said...

if you had told me when i was little that one day i'd eat cookies containing raisins and ENJOY them, i would've called you crazy. i do love them though--there's something so satisfying about a mouthful of chewy oats and sweet raisins. :)

bake in paris said...

I can see that you are a meticulous person - very detailed with you choice of things, even with baking?? :-)

Btw, these cookies are delicious.

Sawadee from Bangkok,

Sinful Southern Sweets said...

I adore oatmeal cookies!! These look so good. Oh and the fact that they're chewy, mmmm....I'm trying these soon!