So, after discovering I was a Baking Goddess…see my first blog post…I decided to expand my repertoire. And by, “expand my repertoire” I really meant, “learn to bake a second type of cookies in order to begin a repertoire.”
I posted to my personal Facebook asking for a good oatmeal raisin recipe. I know there are tons of great recipes on the interwebs, but honestly, I love baking things that are personal. I love getting recipes from my friends which are their mother’s, grandmother’s, or however many generation’s tried and true recipe.
Well, wouldn’t ya know; so many of my friends had a “tried and true” recipe…from QUAKER OATS! The original recipe on the Quaker Oats container was a hit among the masses.
The slight variations among my friends on how to “re-plump” the raisins were now a topic of debate. From a cup of water to a cup of bourbon/whiskey/brandy/schnapps and everything in between, my friends had a lot of advice…and clearly a LOT of booze in their kitchens!
The first time making the cookies, my oldest daughter was only 13 at the time (she’s now 19) so, I went with the non-boozy option of water and cinnamon. I mixed a cup of boiling water with a teaspoon of cinnamon then poured that over a cup of raisins. After an hour, I drained the raisins and added them to the batter. The cookies came out great!
HELPFUL SIDE NOTE: Something I discovered with my newfound Baking Goddess skills: cookies get hard as a flippin’ rock within a day or two. How do you keep them fresh without adding all sorts of crappy chemicals or eat them all in one sitting??? So, of course I had posted to my Facebook page asking for advice…what else does one do on Facebook when not farming or playing poker??? Placing a slice of bread in the container with the cookies was a FANTASTIC idea…in theory! As I quickly discovered however, bread will help cookies retain their freshness, but the cookies that touch the slice of bread end up tasting like bread. So, what is the new answer to the question?? (Unless you enjoy a bready taste with your cookies, in which case, just ignore this next recommendation) TORTILLAS!
Small or medium soft shell tortillas are phenomenal! Depending on the size of the container you’re storing the cookies in, you can use a whole, half, or even quarter of a tortilla to keep the entire container fresh! (The tortilla will become stale, but the cookies are fresh as can be….SCIENCE!)
Over the years I have tried many variations on the Quaker Oats recipe and the one I now bake all the time was a complete and utter accident/screw up! I wanted to bake oatmeal raisin cookies in the fall and was getting frisky with my flavors. (as one does when their confidence starts to build) The Quaker Oatmeal Raisin cookies were delicious as is, but what would make them BETTER? What are some of the “flavors of fall?” Pumpkin, apple, caramel, ginger, cinnamon, cranberry, pear, and so on. Hhhhhhmmmmm I don’t like pumpkin anything, so that was out. I LOVE apple everything, so that was a strong contender! Cinnamon went well with apples. Apples and raisins with cinnamon started sounding REALLY good!
My Baking Goddess ideas were spinning! Okay, I was going to re-plump my raisins in applesauce with some cinnamon, strain them and add them to the batter like I did with the water! Well, when it came time to add the raisins to the batter, straining the applesauce was a complete pain in the arse! Plucking out the raisins one by one was not happening either…after I plucked out a dozen and wasn’t even close to being done. Sooooooo, I dumped the raisins and applesauce into the batter and mixed it all up. The batter tasted amazing, but how would they bake? (If they were terrible, I would just start over and soak the raisins in something boozy.)
As I started to assemble the cookies on the cookie sheets, I noticed they were mushy rather than firm. (Well, there was more liquid in them because of the applesauce) Into the oven for the recommended time they went and then I waited. When the timer went off they were far from done. So, I put them back in for 5 more minutes. Checked them, and 5 more minutes. Checked…I feel like you see where I am going here. They literally had to be baked for double the original time! From 8-10 minutes, these lovelies were not done until close to the 20 minute mark!
I put them on a cooling rack and gave them a few minutes to cool off. Which, let’s face it, is a good idea with anything you take out of the oven. They were SO yummy! I brought them into work the next day for my coworkers/guinea pigs to try, and they were a HUGE HIT!
Over the years I played with the amount of cinnamon, flour, and timing of baking. I have it perfected, and because of the moistness of the cookie, they’re more cake-like than crispy cookie, but a HUGE hit at parties!
GOT KIDS? Kids LOVE to bake! My 2 year old and my 12 year old are AWESOME helpers in the kitchen! My 12 year old is using her math skills to measure ingredients and my 2 year old, well; he eats most of the raisins and then is an excellent cookie tester once they’re cooled off!
Here is the recipe for my AWESOME Applesauce Oatmeal Raisin cookies!
Applesauce Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- 2 sticks of softened butter
- ¾ Cup of packed brown sugar
- ½ Cups of sugar
- 2 Large Eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 Cups flour
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- ½ tsp Salt
- 3 Cups of Old Fashioned Oats (NOT instant or quick…YUCK/MUSH!)
- 1 Cup Applesauce (Unsweetened or Regular, whichever you prefer)
- 3 TBSP Cinnamon (to be mixed thoroughly into applesauce)
- 1 Cup Raisins
- Boil applesauce and 3 TBSP of cinnamon
- Put into bowl
- Add Raisins
- Cover and set aside for 1 hour
Preheat the oven to 350° F
- In large bowl, beat butter, vanilla, and sugars on medium speed until creamy.
- Add Eggs one at a time
- In a separate bowl combine:
- Baking soda
- Add dry ingredients to wet and mix well
- Add oats and raisin mixture to bowl and mix well
Put cookie size dollops on baking sheet which has been lined with parchment paper!
Bake for 12-18 minutes, depending on size.
- If you take them out and they don’t look quite done to you, put them in for another 2 to 3 minutes. They should never look wet/moist.
- Also, make sure bottoms are not burnt when putting them back in for more time.
Next blog, I will be sharing my banana chocolate chip muffins! Find out what happened when I was in the middle of mixing everything and realized I was almost out of chocolate chips! OH NO!!!!