Thursday, July 28, 2011
Share and Share Alike
Just like everybody else, last week I did all that I could to avoid dealing with the heat wave, so I took extreme measures by planning a long weekend at a friend's house in the Hamptons. (OK, I actually had planned the weekend well in advance of knowing that there would be extreme weather to avoid, but it dovetailed nicely.) Instead of standing on the subway platform with sweat pouring down my body from my neck to my shins, I read magazines in the pool. Not BY the pool. IN the pool. It was totes relaxing. And even though it was still hot out east, due to some very comfortable A/C, baking was not out of the question.
My little friends, F & A, demand that we bake EVERY time that I see them, and over this long, hot weekend we managed three recipes: peanut butter cookies, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, and cowboy cookies. This was my first time making cowboy cookies, but they were a hit, particularly the name. As modern bakers, we decided to be all inclusive, so called them cowgirl cookies as well.
We left out the coconut and nuts (walnuts or pecans) that the recipe often calls for. I asked my small baker friends about the add-ins and they decided that no, they didn't like those ingredients, so chocolate chips and peanut butter chips took center stage. They were delish. And just so you know, we didn't personally eat all of the cookies that we made. Of course we tried them all, but we know how to share.
Cowboy (and GIRL!) Cookies
(Adapted from Epicurious.com)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter chips, optional
1/2 cup shredded coconut, optional
1 cup chopped, toasted walnuts or pecans, optional
1. Whisk the flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl to blend.
2. Using an electric mixer (or stand mixer or wooden spoon), beat the butter and both sugars in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla, beating to combine. Add the dry ingredients and beat until just blended. Stir in the chocolate chips and peanut butter chips, coconut, and nuts, if using. It is recommended to cover the dough and chill 1 hour before baking, but can also be baked immediately. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled. Let soften slightly before continuing.)
3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Form the dough into balls, using about 1/4 cup dough for each. Place on baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Flatten with your hand to form 3 1/2-inch rounds. Bake 10 minutes, then rotate the sheets. Bake until the cookies are golden brown around edges and firm in center, about 4 minutes longer. Cool on sheet for 5 minutes. Transfer the cookies to racks to cool completely. (Can be made 1 week ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.) Makes about 24 cookies.