Sunday, March 1, 2015

Oatmeal Chewies Cookie

 © Donna Cook – All Rights Reserved  
Plain oatmeal raisin cookies taste like Styrofoam to me unless there's a lot of butter in the recipe. This recipe is adapted from the recipe on the lid of Old Fashioned Quaker Oats. I use whole rolled oats. I haven't tried this recipe with quick oats or steel cut oats but they probably would work also. I've jazzed it up with other dried fruits and added nuts. 

For dried fruit I use golden raisins and dates. There are a lot of dried fruits and mixes available so I plan to try them. Tropical fruit mix, dried apples, currants, dried kiwi and and dried cherries are just a few of the ones that I've seen. Also, I've substituted canola oil and skim milk for the butter. If you prefer butter, substitute 1/2 cup butter for the milk and oil. Also, the recipe can easily be cut in half and baked in an 8" x 8" pan. This is a very heavy batter so I just mix it in a bowl with a wooden spoon. Hope you and your family enjoy these cookies!

Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup milk (whole, skim, or 2%)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup dried fruit (I use golden raisins and dates. Any dried fruit or dried fruit mix will work)
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (I use walnuts. Any nut will work-almonds, pecans, macadamia, peanuts)
  • 1/2 cup flaked coconut (optional)
  • 1 cup any chips-chocolate, peanut butter, butterscotch (optional)
Stats
  • Total time: 1 hour
    • Prep time: 15 min
    • Cook time: 45 min
  • Servings: 24 bars 2 inch square
Instructions
  1. Thoroughly combine oil, mil, and sugars in large bowl
  2. Mix in eggs and vanilla until smooth.
  3. Add Flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. 
  4. Mix until completely incorporated.
  5. Add oats, dried fruits, nuts, and coconut.
  6. The batter will be very thick. Mix until ingredients are evenly present in batter.
  7. Grease 13"x 9" baking pan.
  8. Spread batter as evenly as possible in pan.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.
  10. Remove from oven.
  11. Cool and cut into bars.

Food Facts

Common oats belong to the genus and species Avena Sativa in the Family Poaceae, the grass family. The genus Rubus includes a wide variety of oats include Abysinnian oats, black oats and many others. The three top oat producing states are Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota.


This recipe calls for rolled oats, the most common type of oatmeal on the grocery shelf. However, you may also see a variety of oat products. Let’s start with the whole oat, harvested from the field. As you might expect, the whole plant is harvested including the stalks and the kernels, which are covered by a hull. After removing the stalks and the inedible hulls, the kernels remain. They’re called oat groats! I love the rhyme and alliteration of that name. 

Anyway, where the heck does oatmeal fit into all this? Now that we have oat groats, they just need to be steamed to destroy the enzymes that would cause them to go rancid. Then the oat groats are rolled to flatten them and to aid in cooking. Voila! Rolled oats ready to be cooked or baked. 

If you consider that steaming and flattening oat groats commercially to be processed food, you can buy oat groats and roll them yourself in a grain crusher. I’m trying to reduce the number of processed foods that I eat, but I’ll keep buying rolled oats for the convenience. 

For quick oatmeal, the oat groats are rolled much thinner so that they cook faster. Instant oatmeal may be the most convenient but it is the most processed. They are precooked and dehydrated so all you need to do is add hot water. They’re perfect for camping or a quick breakfast at work. 

Oat groats cut with metal blades are called steel cut oats. Other names for this type oat preparation are pinhead or Irish oatmeal. If the oat groats are stone ground, they are termed Scottish oatmeal. 

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