During the summertime, using the oven is a major bummer. Our apartment turns into an unintentional sweat lodge. We usually stick to grilling and making salads. Now that Fall is here and the temperature outside has finally dropped, I'm ready to get back into the baking game.
To shake off the cobwebs, I figured cookies would be the easiest and most forgiving sweet to make. My favorite cookies happen to be the ones that have lots of flavor and textural elements. Oatmeal cookie dough makes a great base for the addition of dried fruit and nuts of your choice. My advice with oatmeal cookies: Go balls out. Throw all of the dregs of your pantry in the bowl (measured out, of course)and you'll end up with a surprisingly tasty end result.
Meg's Pantry Cleanin' Oatmeal Cookies
(Adapted from a recipe found on Food.com)
Makes about 2 dozen.
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup of millet, rye flakes, wheat germ or any other coarse grain that you've got leftover in the pantry
1/2 a cup chopped pecans, walnuts, or shredded coconut
1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup white sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 fresh eggs
1/2 cup dried blueberries or other fruit
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whip the softened butter, mixing in the rest of the liquid ingredients (vanilla, eggs, maple syrup) until incorporated. Add this mixture to the dry ingredients and fold in until all dry ingredients are incorporated. I use my hands sometimes, as the batter is very thick.
On a parchment lined baking sheet, scoop the batter (I use a TBSP to measure out the portions) and place with about 2-3 inches in between. The batter spreads quite a bit. Place in the oven for about 10 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool on a baking rack and then eat the hell out of those cookies!
On a cold autumn day, pop a batch of these in the oven and your apartment will smell wonderful and feel so cozy and warm that you'll forget all about those sweltering summer days!