Oatmeal Cookies


Brown sugar. I love brown sugar. I love its sweeter, denser, lingering flavor–more intriguing than plain old granulated sugar.


These little pretties are crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and the brown sugar and cinnamon are sweet enough to make you forget that they’re mostly oatmeal. I used extra-strong fancy-pants cinnamon from Penzey’s, and purposely didn’t use less, as I was supposed to (“just use two-thirds of what the recipe calls for,” they say–how could you possibly use less of that incredible smelling stuff!?).


Today–the last day of 2010–it is foggy outside, quiet inside, and since I’m still in my pajamas at two in the afternoon, I decided to French-press some Alterra coffee and eat fresh cookies for lunch. It was definitely a good idea. Continue reading

Peppermint Brownie Cookies


Today was the first snowfall of the season, so it seemed a perfect time to test out a holiday gift-giving cookie recipe from Bon Appetit.


I learned two lessons today. One: I will never again buy store-brand chocolate chips. Nope. Never. No matter how much the prices of good chocolate rise. The Ghiradelli chips I splurged on today melted into shiny, beautiful ribbons of dark chocolate… and that brings me to lesson number two: My double boiler was completely worth the money.


Unfortunately, that Bon Appetit recipe that caught my eye didn’t make nearly as many cookies as I thought it would (anticipated: 50, actual yield: 32!? Argh), but the cookies are pretty divine… especially with one switch.


Soft peppermint sticks! I have no idea where my mother got them, but thank goodness she threw them into a care package a while back. I’m not a fan of super-minty hard candies, so when I realized I had these in my baking cabinet (yes, I have a cabinet devoted to baking supplies–don’t you?), I knew this was the perfect thing. Too bad they’re a pain to crush, but it was worth it.


I also highly recommend using a cookie/melon scoop, because this is not a fun dough to scoop by hand. Unless you like chocolate all over the place–in which case, go for it.


Oh yes. They turn out quite pretty. But they still need a little something…


There we go. And then just a little bit of…


That. Perfect. Now the question is, will I be able to stop myself from eating all of them before I put them in the freezer to give away? So much for gifts… good thing I started early. Continue reading