The other day I came home and had the sudden urge to dunk a thick, chewy cookie into a cold glass of milk. I wanted something that reminded me of a cookie I once ate at a friend’s house. She called them “mountain cookies”, and they were filled with oats, chocolate, and raisins. Whenever I think of those cookies I imagine being snuggled up in a log cabin watching the snow fall with nothing to do but read books, drink tea, and eat cookies. So after a cold walk home (yes, I do realize that last week I posted a summer dessert recipe and boasted about trees being in bloom), I needed some comfort. But I was out of raisins, so I created my own version of mountain cookies, and –dare I say it?–I like them more.
The secret to achieving the chewy, moist texture that makes these cookies so irresistible is an ingredient that I threw in at the last moment: coconut. The key is to add a small amount (1/4 cup) so that the cookies don’t taste of coconut but benefit from the texture of it.
Hearty Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes about 19 cookies (and will easily double)
For the Dough:
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375º
In a bowl of electric mixer, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy (this can also be done with a hand mixer in a large mixing bowl). Add egg and vanilla and beat until well incorporated.
In a separate bowl, mix together flours, oatmeal, coconut, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add to butter mixture, mixing until the flour is just combined. Add chocolate chips and mix.
Roll about 1 tbsp. of dough between your hands and flatten slightly. Place on a large cookie sheet about 1 inch apart (these do not spread very much). Bake for 8-9 minutes, or until edges are slightly golden and centres are moist.
Allow cookies to cool for about 5 minutes on sheet, then place on a wire rack to cool completely. Grab a glass of milk, your book, and a plate and go enjoy the afternoon. The dishes can wait.
These will keep well on the counter for at least five days (good luck with that). I hope that you can take a bit of time this weekend and give these a try. That mountain lodge may just be in my mind, but these sure brought it a little closer to my heart. I hope they do the same for you.