My close friend handed me half a dozen oatmeal raisin cookies last week at church and said, "Taste these and tell me what is wrong with them. I think they taste salty." I handed them out to my family and we munched them in the car - I thought that they were a good recipe, decent texture but not anything super special. I gave her some tips on upping the spices in the cookie and then told her I'd hunt down a new oatmeal cookie recipe for her.
But as with many other things, oatmeal cookies recipes exist in droves so choosing the right recipe was hurting my head. After some consideration, I thought I'd refer to my library book, barefoot contessa back to basics, and see if her oatmeal cookie recipe was any good.
Her recipe seemed perfect -EXCEPT - it had a huge amount of pecans (1 1/2 cups) in it. As I was bringing these to a church function where two people had to avoid nuts, I thought and quickly made the decision to substitute rice krispies (organic brown rice ones) for the pecans. Why not just skip the nuts? I had some sense that the nuts were also adding a textural interest to the cookie and I felt the need to substitute something in there that would add a crunch. I also upped the cinnamon factor as I love it as a spice and wanted it to be a stronger presence, especially since pecan would have added another dimension of flavor, but rice krispies were going to be a bit bland.
What ended up happening is the creation of a cookie that is both chewy and crispy! A total chance encounter made by the fact that I had to eliminate nuts. Had I not had the restriction of no nuts, I think I would have just put them in there and been done with it and missed out on this great new recipe...
Chewy Crispy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (adapted from barefoot contessa back to basics)
Makes 5 dozen, 2 inch cookies
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
1 cup granulated sugar
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
2teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups old-fashioned oatmeal (do NOT use instant - you will lose the textural chewiness)
1 1/2 cup raisins
1 1/2 cup rice krispies
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Beat together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla.
Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt together into a medium bowl. With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Add the oats, raisins and rice krispies and mix just until combined.
Drop tablespoons of dough onto sheet pans lined with parchment paper. Flatten slightly with a damp hand. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until lightly browned. Transfer the cookies to a baking rack and cool completely.