When I first started this blog (six months ago), I pictured myself continuously working in my kitchen, developing and taste-testing recipes and then, giving them to friends for the final stamp of approval. As with most well-laid plans, the reality is different than I anticipated. While I do spend time in the kitchen, much of my time is spent researching (a skill I am glad that I can still apply from my long ago academic days). I learn about ingredients, the science behind baking and plan my baking ahead of time according to what is available seasonally. The learning curves that I am working away at include photography, social media, blogging, writing, storytelling and food styling. It is much more involved than I ever imagined but I love the daily challenge. I am also deeply grateful for the opportunity to explore these creative avenues while still being home to support my family.
I have sat, read and pondered how to present this cookie post for a while now. It seems I’m suffering from writer’s block. Visually though, I couldn’t be more enthusiastic and inspired because spring has sprung. All the trees and spring flowers are on the brink of bursting open with colour. The first, brave souls already have, mainly crocuses, bluets (scilla), different varieties of daffodils, hyacinths and some tulips. Soon, early spring veggies and fruit will pop up (I’m looking at you, rhubarb). Until then, my baking pantry is stocked with dried fruits, chocolate and flours of all types.
This post is then, brought to you by my pregnancy craving for chocolate and raisins (or chocolate covered raisins). As I child, I recall greatly disliking raisins because I usually mistook them for chocolate chips in a cookie. Now, I love them in oatmeal and in all sorts of baked goods. These cookies are hearty owing in part to the mixed porridge and grain mix that I used. They are chewy on the inside with a crunch along the edges. Also, not for the faint at heart. Go on, give them a go!
Hearty Chocolate Chip and Raison Oatmeal Cookies
Makes: 22-24 large cookies
Time: Prep time (20 minutes) + Resting time (2 hours) + Baking time (15-20 minutes)
225 g (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
200 g (1 cup) brown sugar
110g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
1 tbsp fancy molasses
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
265 g (2 cups) large flake oats or a grain mixture**
160 g (1 cup) bread flour
67 g (1/2 cup) pastry flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp kosher salt
2 tsp cinnamon
265 g (1 ½ cups) chocolate chips (I used a combination of regular and mini chocolate chips)
135 g (1 cup) white raisins
1. Beat butter, sugars and molasses in a stand mixer or using a hand-held mixer for 3-5 minutes. Add the vanilla extract and egg and beat until fluffy. Add the oats and mix until incorporated.
2. Whisk the flours, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Add to the wet mixture and mix at low speed until you cannot see any more flour clumps.
3. Add the chocolate chips and raisons to the cookie dough and mix on low (or “stir” setting on Kitchen Aid) until evenly distributed.
4. Using a large cookie scoop, scoop mounds of dough onto parchment or waxed paper (about 60-70 grams or 2-2.4 ounces). Place dough mounds into an airtight container, separated by wax paper, into the refrigerator for 2 hours and up to 5 days.
5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place cookie mounds on the sheet and give them some room to spread. Bake for 15-20 minutes. The bottom of the cookies should be slightly browned, the top should be cooked
6. Remove the pan from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before serving. The cookies will continue baking on the pan.
Serve with a glass of milk (you made to share your cookie as they are large)!
* It is essential that you allow the cookie dough to rest in the refrigerator. This allows for a cookie that is chewy and spreads less.
** I used Rogers Porridge Oats & Ancient Grains which gives these cookies a crunch factor. It is a delightful combination.