I grew up as an only-child in a single-parent household. We never had a ton of money, so when we did something clearly impractical – baking, going to the movies, going to the mall – it was a special occasion.
Father’s day was last Sunday. This is always an interesting holiday for me as my dad and I don’t really have a relationship. I’m not one of those kids who’s upset about it – it’s been enough years that I’ve realized it’s just not going to happen. When I was little, this was my holiday – named by mom “kids day.” We would do fun things I liked to do and just generally make the holiday less of a focus on something I didn’t have. Mom never wanted me to feel like I was missing out and she certainly did a great job with this particular hurdle.
Well as usual, Thursday was baking day around here. Not so usual, I decided to make cookies two weeks in a row! It had been a long one, and there’s something so comforting about my moms cookies, which were often the chosen “kids day” activity.
Some of my best memories of childhood were when mom taught me how to bake. I loved measuring things and would try my darndest to stir this crazy thick dough. The smell of these cookies reminds me of sitting in the kitchen, scooping out dough onto the cookie sheet (mom, undoubtedly coming behind me to fix the giant ones I would scoop) in a time when all was right with the world. There was no such thing as work stress or prioritizing. It was fun. Pure fun with my mom.
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies
I will pre-apologize that a couple of these measurements are going to be a little strange. I’m not so good at actually measuring cookie mix-ins or timing my baking. I mostly bake by scent.
- 1 3/4 cups AP flour
- 3 1/2 cups Whole Oats
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup butter (softened)
- 1/2 cup shortening (may be substituted with butter but the texture will change)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg (I personally omit this, but when friends request these cookies they ask it to be added frequently)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 cup (ish) chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 375.
In a stand mixer (or by hand, or a hand mixer or whatever you have!) cream together the butter, shortening, vanilla, eggs and sugars. Just keep on going until it’s light and fluffy! In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, a pinch of salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg if you want it.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet, stir until just combined. fold in the oats, walnuts and chocolate. If you want to add something else, go for it! Things I’ve tried: raisins, coconut, toffee, dried cranberries, peanut butter chips. Use your imagination. 🙂
These cookies don’t spread very much, so they’re great for little kids to practice putting out the dough. Line your baking sheet with parchment paper or use a silpat and do tablespoon sized heaps. Bake for 10 (ish) minutes. Just until the peaks and edges start to brown then take them out! Do not over bake, as they lose their delicious chewy consistency.
Let cool, then store in a ziplock bag for as long as it takes for them all to be eaten (probably less than 12 hours).