Trying to catch up on blog posts from last weekend's baking. It's been a busy week at work but we're coming up on Friday and that's always a good thing.
I've been looking for a good oatmeal cookie recipe. The ones I like best for flavor are closer to a chocolate chip cookie but I wanted something with the satisfying chewiness of an oatmeal cookie. I think I found it in this recipe. You not only grind oatmeal to add like flour to the dough (remember the $250 Neiman Marcus cookie fable?) but you also add oatmeal as is to the dough, hence it qualifies for oatmeal cookie status. And you melt chocolate before adding to the dough to make a subtly flavored chocolate oatmeal cookie. Genius. For added chewiness, I also took the liberty of adding some caramel bits to the dough, similar to the Milk Chocolate Caramel Cookies recipe from Milk & Cookies. Turned out to also be a brilliant idea. Just make sure you embed the caramel bits into the dough. A little peeking through is okay but if they're stuck on the outside of the dough, they'll "run" when you bake them and spread into a puddle so you may end up with a misshapen cookie.
What made this cookie a winner beside great flavor is the texture. Cooled to just barely lukewarm, the edges are crisp and the middle is nice and gooey. Even when it's fully cooled to room temperature, it's satisfyingly chewy. Remember not to overbake it.
1 ¾ cups (5 ¼ ounces) old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup (5 ounces) all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup packed (7 ounces) light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ounces milk chocolate, melted and cooled
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup caramel bits
1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Place 1 cup oats in food processor or blender and process until well ground, about 30 seconds. Transfer to large bowl and stir in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
2. Using stand mixer fitted with paddle, beat butter and brown sugar together on medium high speed until well blended and lumps are gone, about 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add egg and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds. Add melted chocolate and beat until incorporated, about 20 seconds. Add flour mixture and beat on low speed until just incorporated, about 15 seconds. Add remaining ¾ cup oats, chocolate chips, and caramel bits and beat on low speed until evenly distributed, about 10 seconds.
3. Working with 2 tablespoons of dough at a time, roll into balls and space 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake, rotating pans halfway through baking, until cookies are cracked on top but look moist within cracks, 14 to 18 minutes. Let cookies cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes, transfer to wire rack and let cool completely before serving. Alternatively, you can make the cookie into dough balls, place in freezer bags and freeze; bake when cookie fix is needed.