Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Not Always as Written

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The email was pretty straight forward. "Dear Sweetie, do you EVER follow a recipe exactly as it was written. You know someone went to a lot of work to test it, why do you feel entitled to change it?" Okay, she is a loyal reader, a friend who obviously knows me well enough to have my email, but she has an ax to grind on my creative license.
The short answer is yes, I do follow recipes as written. As a matter of fact at the end of the month you'll see my Daring Baker's Challenge, and it has to be made as written, those are the rules. But the long answer to my friend is not always. Not everyone can alter a recipe the first time out. I am not always terribly successful at my edits. But the truth is, in the case of the following cookie, I prefer walnuts over almonds in my cookies. I had a little light brown sugar and a little dark brown sugar, so we combined them, I suppose it is medium brown sugar. And my flour bin looked a little like sand art, whole wheat and white mingling in one space. I had sweetened coconut not unsweetened like the recipe called for. And, although I have the remains of my kick ass 10 pound bar of bittersweet Guittard bar, I have random remains of Schokinag chocolate chunks, Nestle chocolate chunks and Nestle butterscotch chips, what the hey, I dumped them all in...didn't even measure! Ha! The result, delicious.

I know not to mess with flour and fat proportions, baking soda vs. baking powder, but other elements, go for it. What is the worst that can happen? Inedible? Doubt it, but the birds are a little hungry this time of year. So, get in there and cook!

Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies
from and altered by me!

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
6 Tablespoons white sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
2 1/4 cup old fashioned oatmeal
7 oz can sweetened coconut
chocolate chips or chunks, 12 ounces or 2 cups
3/4 cup walnuts, chopped
Cream butter and sugars until fluffy. Add the eggs and mix until incorporated. Add the vanilla, soda, salt and flour and mix until combined. Add all the good stuff and gently mix until it is all ditributed. Use a large spoon or dough scoop and then flatten the mounds on the sheet. They spread a little, so don't crowd them. Bake on Silpats 12 minutes at 350 or until the edges are just brown. Cool on racks.
I am wrapping mine in wax paper with layers of thinly sliced apple (not touching the cookies) to ship them off to New Mexico. Make sure you share yours with someone you love too!

1 comment:

  1. hey Sweetie--for those of us who are "recipe challenged"--your ever so slightly personal renditions to a recipe give us hope. Hope that we too can alter recipes to match what ingredients are in the pantry and still be able to consume the baked goods. Better yet, your family approves of the "new" baked good. The cookies were yummy, even though your loved one did not know "what kind" they were! Thank you!