Sunday, March 28, 2010

Oatmeal Cookies

6 1/4 oz unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

3 1/2 oz old-fashioned rolled oats
4 oz pecans, toasted and chopped
4 oz bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
5 oz dried sour fruit, coarsely chopped (sour cherries, cranberries)

6 oz (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but cool
10 1/2 oz dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions. Heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium bowl. In second bowl, stir together oats, pecans, fruit, and chocolate.

3. In standing mixer with paddle blade, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until no sugar lumps remain (1 minute). Scrape bowl, add egg and vanilla. Beat on medium low until fully incorporated (30 seconds) and scrape bowl again. With mixer at low speed, add flour mixture. Mix until just combined (30 seconds). Add oat-nut mixture until just combined (30 seconds). Check for even distribution of oat-nut mixture and ensure no pockets of flour remain.

4. Divide dough in half. Divide each half in half (4 equal portions). Repeat again twice for 16 equal portions. Using palms, roll each portion into balls and place on baking sheet about 2 1/2 inches apart. Flatten each ball to 1 inch thickness. Bake 12 minutes, then rotate sheets back to front and switch top and bottom sheets. Bake 8 - 10 minutes longer until edges are set, but centers look wet and shiny.

5. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire rack and cool to room temperature.

Adapted from Erika Bruce's "The Ultimate Oatmeal Cookie" in Cook's Illustrated (May/June 2005).

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