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  • Walnut & Raisin Oatmeal Cookies

    The coziest wishes to you all on this fine Sunday! I hope you spent your weekend relaxing and rejuvenating and re-whatever-ing you need to do to be prepared for the week ahead.

    For me, that consisted of sleeping in, hanging out with my sister, buying a plant (a prayer plant...cool right?), drinking lots of coffee, walking around Lake Merritt, buying some mighty fine spices from Oaktown Spice Shop (specifically, chile powder for some beans that will be made today, more specifically, the baked pintos from Deb's new book), and of course, baking cookies. And, side note, while gathering groceries for those beans, I noticed that there were many...almost too many...options for avocados at the grocery store. Small. Medium. Large. Mexico. California. Ripe. Not so ripe. Ahhh! The conservative WI-girl in me opted for the "locally" grown (California...) medium not-so-ripe variety. I hope I made the right choice....

    Anyways! I have been thoroughly enjoying Stella's book, Bravetart. A cinnamon roll situation last weekend, and cozy oatmeal cookies this weekend. I have been searching for the "perfect" oatmeal cookie recipe (they are my favorite), and this one is pretty darn legit. It reminded me of Alice Medrich's oatmeal cookies in her cookie book, echoing the use of oat flour. But, what really intrigued me was the use of a small amount of steel cut oats! But evidently, not intriguing enough, since I forgot them at the store, along with the oat flour. But don't worry, the cookies are still A+ without them. Further, I have found that blending rolled oats in a high-speed blender or a decent food processor does the trick to create the powdery, fine oat flour. But, use that oat flour if you have it!Chock full of California raisins, walnuts...brimming with spices (Cinnamon! Nutmeg! Ginger!)...these cookies are legit, just as the Bravetart book is. I am eyeing some new Fat Daddio's to start experimenting with the cake recipes (and to get my ass in gear to bake a small wedding cake for one of my besties in July!). Oh, and Stella's recipe for homemade SPRINKLES. That situation is high on my list, too....

    Cheers and smiles to you all...let's get at this week in a cozy, calm and cookie-y way!



    Oatmeal, Raisin & Walnut Cookies // makes about 30, 1oz cookies // lightly adapted via Bravetart //

    • 2/3 cup (3 oz) all purpose flour
    • 3/4 cup (2 1/2 oz) oat flour (store bought or made by blending rolled oats in a food processor or blender until very fine)
    • 1 2/3 cup (6 oz) old fashioned rolled oats
    • 1/4 cup (1 1/2 oz) steel cut oats (optional)
    • 1 1/4 cup (5 oz) walnuts, toasted
    • 1 cup (6 oz) moist raisins*
    • 2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature 
    • 2/3 cup (5 oz) light brown sugar
    • 1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz) white sugar (I used organic evaporated cane juice)
    • heaped 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
    • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
    • 1 heaped tsp cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
    • 1/4 tsp dried ground ginger 
    • 1 large egg
    • Flakey sea salt, such as Maldon, for sprinkling on top (optional, but serisouly recommended)

    *if your raisins are not moist, you can soak them in hot water for a few minutes, and thoroughly drain them before adding to the recipe.

    1. Toast the walnuts: preheat oven to 350F, and spread walnuts on the optionally lined (silpat, parchment, or aluminum foil with dull-side up) cookie sheet you will bake the cookies on. Toast for 10 minutes, set aside to cool.

    2. In a large bowl, sift the flours and the baking soda. Measure into the same bowl the raisins, and crush the walnuts with your hands into the bowl (no need to chop, between hand-crushing and mixing, they will be perfectly sized in the cookie dough). Set aside

    3. In the bowl of a stand mixer or a bowl to accomodate a hand-mixer, beat the butter until soft and creamy (about 30-45 seconds, but this may take a little longer if your kitchen is a little cool). Into the butter, add the brown sugar, white sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and beat until creamy and slightly fluffy (another 30 or so seconds). Add the egg, and beat until smooth and incorporated.

    4. Portion into 1oz balls (about 2 TB), and space about 2" apart on cookie sheets. Gently press each moudn into a 1/2" tall patty**, and sprinkle with flakey sea salt if desired. Bake for 12-16 minutes (my oven too 16 minutes for a brown, gently crispy bottom and edge), or until the cookies are brown around the outside and opaque in the middle. If you like crispier cookies, bake for a minute or two longer.

    5. Cool for a few minutes on the pan, then transfer to a cooling rack to firm up. Store in an airtight container at room temp or in the fridge/freezer for a few days...enjoy!

    **at this point, you can freeze the little pucks, and place into a bag or container once firm and frozen. To bake fresh cookies, proceed with the baking at 350F for 12-16 minutes, keeping in mind that a few extra minutes may be tagged on to baking straight from the freezer.



    The goods for the goods. Oat flour in the blender. Seriously, it works. Just be sure to blend to a fine texture, and sift with the other flour in the recipe. I found that I needed to blend about 2 cups of oats for the blending to be effective, so you'll have extra oat flour for your additional oat flour needs....like more of these cookies...Sift, stir, blend, whip...we got this!And cookie dough! Rejoice. Breakfast of Champions, really. Scoop 'em up...and smoosh them into 1/2" thick pucks of chunky glory.Yep. Glorious oat-y, warmly spiced, nutty goodness with pockets of sweet, caramel-y raisins. High fives!Now, excuse me, gonna drink coffee and eat cookies all day. Peace!