Baking on a Snowy Day

Oatmeal Tuiles 2Looking out my kitchen window, I once again see snow cascading from the skies. Although the fields behind our house take on a fairy tale glow as the snow blankets them, I am weary of staying in during yet another winter storm. (I’ve lost track of how many we’ve had this year!)

What I do during these blizzards is cook. I’ve made countless soups. Chicken and black bean chili, a thick tomato soup topped with Parmesan cream, and spicy Indian lentil and butternut squash soup helped me ride out previous storms. This week I’ve turned to baking, and pulled out a favorite recipe for extra-thin, extra crispy oatmeal cookies. I was reminded recently of this recipe, which I first made and wrote about two decades ago. A food editor from a Honolulu newspaper wrote to tell me she was running it in the food section of a local paper at the request of one of her readers.

That got me to thinking that these simple cookies would be perfect to bake on a snow-filled day. The ingredients are so basic, you’re likely to have them on hand, and one batch yields about five dozen gossamer-thin crisps. Slim and crisp, rather than thick and chewy, they are perfect for dipping in hot chocolate or coffee in front of a blazing fire.

Extra-Thin, Extra-Crispy Oatmeal Cookies
1 cup regular or quick-cooking oatmeal
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1. Arrange a rack at center position and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with foil or parchment paper. Spray foil very generously with vegetable spray and set aside.

2. Mix together oatmeal, sugar, flour, salt, and baking powder in medium bowl. Beat together egg and vanilla in a small bowl with a fork until just blended. Add egg mixture to oatmeal mixture and mix. Stir in melted butter until butter is incorporated. Dough will be quite moist.

3. Drop scant teaspoonfuls of dough on prepared sheets, leaving at least 2 1/2 inches between each cookie. Bake each cookie sheet separately until cookies have spread and are golden, 8 to 12 minutes. Watch carefully; cooking time can very several minutes depending on type of oven.

4. When done, slide foil with cookies onto work surface and cool until firm, about 5 minutes. Peel off foil and let cookies cool completely. Continue to bake in this manner, relining sheets with foil and spraying with nonstick spray, until all dough has been used. Store cookies in an airtight container 2 to 3 days if not using immediately. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Adapted from Weekends with Friends by Betty Rosbottom (Williams-Sonoma 2000)

 

 

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