Friday, July 22, 2011

Cowboy Cookies

I chose to make cowboy cookies from Scarletta Bakes because the recipe called for shortening and steel cut oats.  I was craving a cookie, but was down to only one stick of butter.  And any recipe that uses steal cut oats automatically means it's healthy.  Right? (We won't discuss which type of shortening I used and whether or not it contained trans-fats or not. )

I made a few substitutions in this recipe.  I switched out the pecans for walnuts.  I mistakenly thought I had a bag of pecans in the freezer, but it turned out that I had 2 bags of walnuts.  How do you mix up walnuts and pecans.  I must not have been paying attention at the store that week. 

Next, I used semi sweet chocolate chips instead of milk chocolate chips.  I rarely keep milk chocolate chips in the house.  Semi sweet always tastes so much better in my opinion.  Since I always use them in chocolate chip cookies, why not use the semi sweet chips in this cookie too.

This recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon of ancho chile powder.  It's kind of a weird ingredient but I guess it is what makes these cookies "cowboy."  I was afraid that would make the cookies too fire-y, so I used 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper instead. This provided just enough heat where after a few bites you go, "Hmm, what is that zip?!"  Mrblocko noticed the slight zing from the spice, but Blockette, if she noticed it, did not complain or comment. 

Finally, I substituted the 1/4 cup of wheat germ with wheat bran.  I had bought some wheat bran for a bread recipe a while back and have been looking for a way to use up the rest of the bag.  I did a bit of research online and found that it was ok to use one for the other.  I thought since the bran is lighter than the germ the dough might be too sticky, but there is so much other stuff in this dough, it holds together just fine. 

Since this recipe contains: Nuts, oats, butterscotch and chocolate chips, and coconut I don't know that I would have attempted to make these cookies without my standmixer.  Betty sure make quick work of blending in all those goodies.  I think my arm would have fallen off had I done it by hand.

This recipe does have a grave error in it.  It states to make the cookie dough into 1 1/2  inch balls, and the recipe will yield 26 cookies.  I did that and got more than double that amount of cookies!  Wow!  That is a lot of cookies.

I was positive that Mrblocko would not like these cookies because of the steal cut oats.  The oats were still grainy and chewy, but I guess it was ok because of all the other textures in the cookie.  I guess a few chewy grains of oats here and there isn't like eating a whole bowl of the stuff by itself.  I rarely make the same recipe twice, but as of this post I've made this two times.  They make a nice tasty afternoon snack, or breakfast when no one is looking.  Like I said before, I feel like I'm being healthy because they have those awesome steal cut oats in them!  Hooray, nutritious cookies for breakfast!  Whoohoo!

Cowboy Cookies from Scarletta Bakes Yields 26 cookies
1 c. shortening
1 c. white sugar, granulated
1 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. cinnamon, ground
1/2 tsp. ancho chile, ground
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. steel cut oats
1 c. coconut, shredded, sweetened
3/4 c. pecans
3/4 c. milk chocolate chips
3/4 c. butterscotch chips
1/4 c. wheat germ

Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream sugars and shortening together. Add eggs and beat until just incorporated. Beat in flour, cinnamon, ancho, baking soda, baking powder and salt until dough is uniform and smooth. Fold in oats, coconut, pecans, chips and wheat germ. Pull off a tablespoon-sized chunk of dough and roll it between your palms into a ball approximately 1 1/2″ around. Place dough ball on a parchment-lined baking sheet and repeat until tray is full. These cookies spread quite a bit while baking so you will not want to crowd your baking sheet – I only baked 8 cookies at a time on my standard size baking sheets. Bake for approximately 12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are just beginning to turn a light golden brown.

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