Friday, March 18, 2011

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies, aka Ray-Ray's Favorite

My favorite cookies!
Sometimes I can be a little forgetful. It is pretty much guaranteed that any time I go grocery shopping, I will forget one item, whether it was on my list or not. Whenever someone asks me to remember something for them, I usually don't (as in, remind me I need to pick up paper towels at the store- hey, I can't even remember that I need buttermilk, so how am I supposed to remember paper towels?). But there's another kind of forgetful and I like to call it a life-forgetful. I've been sick all week, and at the beginning of my illness, I had some random flashbacks which I kind of blamed on the rain (hey, remember that song?! Blame It on the Rain?!). One such flashback involved a song that I was particularly fond of when I was seven years old- it was from my Minnie 'n Me cassette tape and it was called Funderful Wonderful Friends. I had completely forgotten about that song and that tape until that moment in the Target parking lot when the skies were gray and gloomy. Memories.

Being sick has allowed me to reflect alot. It's also allowed me to sleep alot, but I don't think that was by choice. I really couldn't help that I fell asleep on the couch after breakfast every day that I've been home sick this week. But I digress. Being sick has made me seek comfort, in part out of loneliness, and in part because it sucks to have my head hurt and feel so exhausted that just taking the dog out to go potty wipes me out. Luckily my mom was willing to bring me Jamba Juice and muffins while I was incapacitated. But I wanted more. I wanted cookies.

I'm realizing that cookies just may be my favorite. They're the perfect snack. They're portable and it's easy to exercise portion control with them. And they're round- I think round objects are pretty fabulous. They're fun to make, and more fun to eat. They're fun to share. And as far as variety goes, I think that if I wanted to, I could make a different type of cookie every week for the rest of my life and never get bored.

So what kind of cookie did I want while I was sick? Oatmeal Chocolate Chip. My favorite. I think it really is official- this is my favorite kind of cookie. It's been my favorite since I was a little girl singing along to her Minnie 'n Me cassette tape. It combines two loves of mine- oatmeal and chocolate. We all know how I feel about chocolate, but I never really get a chance to express my love of oatmeal. It is hearty, healthy, and delicious. It's something to really bite into. So naturally, combining oatmeal and chocolate chips in a single cookie makes me extremely happy, even when my head is clogged and I'm exhausted and I've spent far too many hours alone.

Not that I was alone when I made the cookies. I had Frakah over again, because that's another thing that is helpful when I'm sick- sister time. We made cookies together (actually, I made the batter, which nearly wore me out, and then we rolled the dough into balls together), and then had pasta with leftover kickass marinara sauce and watched When Harry Met Sally, which just might be one of my favorites. And then we ate warm cookies for dessert. Good evening.
Cooling time
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
adapted from The Grand Central Baking Book

10 oz all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temp
7 oz granulated sugar
7 oz light brown sugar
2 eggs, at room temp
2 tsp vanilla extract
9 oz rolled oats
6 oz bittersweet chocolate chips
6 oz semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Measure the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and whisk to combine.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars together using a hand mixer on medium speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until lighter in color and fluffy. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl several times during the process.

Crack the eggs into a liquid measuring cup and add the vanilla. Slowly pour the eggs into the butter mixture, adding them one at a time and incorporating them completely with the mixer on low speed. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl once during the process.

Gradually add the dry ingredients (in 2 to 3 additions) with the mixer on low speed. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl once, to fully incorporate the butter and sugar. Combine the oats and chocolate in the same bowl used for the dry ingredients, then add them to the dough and stir together with a spatula.

Scoop the dough into 1.5 oz balls. Arrange the dough balls on the prepared pans, 6 per pan, then press into 1/2-inch thick disks.

Bake for 10 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the baking time. The edges of the cookies should be golden brown, while the centers will appear blond and slightly underdone. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets.

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