Friday, June 15, 2007

June 14, 2007: Choc-chip cookies

Michael took my camera to Hungary with him, and in its absence I have borrowed a couple of cameras to keep this blog going as it usually would. First Cassia kindly lent me hers, but then needed it back after a week for her field work. I had recently discovered that peanuts are Cass's weakness and so in gratitude I gave her a packet of Mexican-spiced peanuts from Kingaroy to munch on while she camped and worked. This week I have been depending on Fiona's cute little machine, and I decided to return it with a box of home-made choc-chip cookies to express my appreciation.

I'm not in the habit of calling biscuits "cookies" but I think of this as a very American recipe. No, not because the cookies come out the size of dinner plates! I make 'em small. It's because these are just the kind of thing that a wholesome sitcom mom would present a gaggle of children with after school, accompanied by a glass of milk each. Maybe moreso in the 1950s than now, but I'm sure they'd still look at home in an episode of 7th Heaven. I've had this recipe for about ten years and it's proved to be a crowd-pleaser many times. The cookies are sweet, but with the lightly toasted edge of brown sugar, packed with chocolate chips and almond chunks, and filled out with oatmeal so that they sit comfortably in the stomach rather than poking you sharply with super-sugary regret. (Unless you eat eight of them, then they'll still do that.) The original quantities were enormous and so the ones below are the half-batch I always make. Even this half-batch is a monster, producing three boxes full! One for Fiona, one to share for afternoon tea at the lab, and one to share with Michael when he arrives home tonight.

Choc-chip cookies

2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup butter
1 cup raw sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups plain flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
250g packet of dark choc chips
1 1/2 cups almonds, roughly chopped

Preheat the oven to 190 deg C.

Using a food processor, blend the rolled oats to a powder.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and two sugars. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat again.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder and bicarb soda. Gradually beat them into the butter mixture. Stir in the choc chips and almonds - the biscuit mixture is probably quite stiff and this could be difficult. I "chopped it up" a bit with my wooden spoon to distribute the chocolate and nuts.

Line a baking tray with paper. Roll teaspoonfuls of the mixture into balls and place them on the tray, a couple of inches apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until they just go a little golden. Don't worry if they don't look properly set as they come out of the oven because they will firm up as they cool! These biscuits will be soft and slightly chewy - bake for a couple of extra minutes for a crunchier cookie.


  1. Whatever you call them I think these look absolutely delicious! I'm always impressed by how uniform and cafe worthy your baked goods appear.

  2. yum - those look great - I am impressed you have been making this recipe for 10 years - as a newcomer to choc chip cookies I admire your comfort with them. And I am sure Michael will appreciate some home baked goods to welcome him home.

  3. Truffle, thank you! It's not too difficult to pick a handful of photogenic ones out of a batch this big. :-) The truth is that there are a quite a few misshapen (but still tasty!) ones, and the first trayful were quite overcooked.

    Johanna, I was not much of a cook ten years ago but this featured in my small repertoire of trusty recipes! It's still fun to revisit them occasionally.

  4. Yum yum! I love choc chip cookies but do not bake them often. I do fear that if I bake, I'll eat all of them!

  5. they look yummy! especially with ingredients like oats, almonds in it...=D

  6. Anh, I am too embarrassed to admit just how many of these cookies I have been eating each day since I made them!

    Thanks, IronEaters! (That you, San?) I can assure you that this recipe does taste as good as it looks. :-)

  7. Mmm, yumm-O! Might have to add these to the list of stuff I'll be baking tomorrow. Nice to have treats around the house.

  8. I'm a massive choc chip biscuit fan and I can't wait to try out this recipe! You can never have too many chocolate recipes. These look fabulous!

  9. Hi Anna and Melinda! :-) If either of you do get around to trying this recipe, I'll hope you'll return and tell us how you like these cookies.