Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

Not having an oven for 4 1/2 months = torture

I am already having nightmares about it. Why would someone even build an apartment and not put an oven in the kitchen? That just seems preposterous. I mean my friend’s 8×8 Parisian apartment – makes sense – there isn’t room. A normal size apartment with a normal size kitchen – doesn’t make sense – plenty of room. The pseudo replacement of a toaster oven better have magical baking capacities that I am currently unaware of.

Get ready for the series of nat and her toaster oven accompanied by her trusty hot plates – unreal.

Thinking about my oven-less situation come September made me want to bake – so I did.

If you wanna do something, then do it. End of discussion, especially when the matter is to bake or not to bake.

Ingredients: (adapted from this recipe right hurrrrr)

Dry ingredients

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (a pinch more depending on the moisture of the mix) –> haha have yet to find whole wheat flour so white just had to suffice
  • 1 1/2 cups of Large Flake Rolled Oats (smaller flake is ok too)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp Cinnamon
  • 4 Tbsp. flax meal

Wet ingredients

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup oil (corn, grapeseed or olive – or sunflower oil like I used)
  • 1 egg (beat with 1 Tbsp Water)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla

Yummy ingredients aka mix-ins

  • 3/4 cup cranberries
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs

Preparation:

  1. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix all the wet ingredients together. Hint: when measuring out the honey, spray the measuring cup with oil or baking spray–your honey won’t stick).
  3. Mix the wet stuff with the dry stuff. Add your mix-ins. If the mixture seems too wet, add a bit of flour. If it isn’t binding together very well, you may wish to add an egg white.
  4. COOL the mix for 20 minutes in the fridge.
  5. Preheat the oven to 335 degrees (lower temperature due to the honey in the recipe which will burn more easily). –> I trust the baker but for me these babies were baked on #5 with the homestay oven!
  6. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto your baking sheet (I recommend lining the baking sheet with parchment paper). Press down with a fork to ensure even cooking. – I used my hand – oops.
  7. Bake for about 15 – 20 minutes or until golden on the bottom of the cookie. The cookies freeze very well and make a great snack! Enjoy.

Host mother and sister approved

Cheers from the land that I am not sure knows the importance of a “normal” oven

n

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To Sweet Potato Oatmeal Breakfast Casserole

I made this last Sunday for breakfast brunch with my two friends who came down. Not only did we all devour it, but I thought cooking for them was the least I could do since they had put up with me and my tooth pain (yada yada yada you are probably sick of me mentioning my tooth, but Ill be done complaining and bringing it up tomorrow after my 2 hour long surgery). With a sore mouth this was a smart choice dish because it was nice and soft and chewing wasn’t really required (although I sometimes inhale my food so chewing isn’t always a part of my eating process…should work on that).

I am not a big oatmeal person but this sold me…so much that I really want to prep overnight oats tonight for breakfast in the morning…maybe I am coming around. I love oats – like will eat a handful of dry oats, oats in cookies are great and with milk too, but when you cook it the texture gets me – but not this dish. Maybe it is the secret powers of the banana that is in the dish that makes me have an infinite love for it, hmmmm, Ill keep pondering it, but time to share this delectable and vegan dish (:

Source: Oh She Glows

Ingredients:

Oatmeal Ingredients:

1/2 cup regular oats

2 cups organic soy milk

1 small sweet potato, peeled, chopped (made 2 cups raw or 1.5 cups cooked)

1 ripe large banana (lots of brown spots ripe)

1 tbsp chia seeds (if you omit, you may have to reduce the milk)

1-2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 tsp ground cinnamon + 1/8th tsp nutmeg + 1/4 tsp kosher salt, or to taste

2 tbsp pure maple syrup

Crunchy Pecan Topping:

1/3 cup chopped pecans

2 tbsp Earth Balance

2 tbsp flour

1/4 cup brown sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F. Bring several cups of water to a boil in a medium sized pot. Add in the peeled and chopped sweet potato. Cook over medium heat, for about 5 minutes, until fork tender. Drain and set aside.

Give the pot a quick rinse and then add in the oats, milk, and chia seeds. Whisk well and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low-medium and cook for about 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently.

With a potato masher, mash in the cooked sweet potato and the banana into the pot. I left some chunks for texture. Now stir in the cinnamon, maple syrup, nutmeg, and salt to taste. Adjust seasonings if necessary. Cook on low for another few minutes.

Make the crunchy pecan topping by mixing together the pecans, flour, Earth Balance (or butter), and brown sugar with a fork. until very clumpy. Pour the oatmeal into a baker dish (I used a 4 cup/8 inch casserole dish) and spread out evenly. Now sprinkle on the pecan topping.

Transfer the oats to a casserole dish (8inch/4cup or whatever you have!) and bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes, at 350F. After 20 minutes, set oven to BROIL and broil on low for a couple minutes, watching very closely so you do not burn the topping. Remove from oven and serve. makes 3-4 servings.


Note: If you want beautiful pictures like Angela then be a little more patient than my friends and I – we started to cut it when it was still super hot and while it was delicious it was not in a state to photograph post serving. (:

Cheers

n

To Oatmeal Scotchies (Soldier Cookies)

So my choice of baking came down to a house vote tonight. It was a tie between Pumpkin Chocolate Chip and Oatmeal Scotchies and the latter won out! Many in my co-op house didn’t know what they were, but these are an all time classic in the Cartwright household and for good reason. From 2002-2004 I lived in Doha, Qatar (a little peninsula of a country that jets into the Persian Gulf off of Saudi Arabia) and my dad was back and forth between Qatar and Kuwait for work and every time (or a majority of the time) my mums would send him back with a ton (like 100+) of these cookies. Why? Because they are just so dang delicious and they transported well. The oats and the butter and all of that deliciousness just sticks together like they were made for each other (but really they were). So my nickname for these cookies are the “Soldier Cookies” since the soldiers in Kuwait were always pleased when they saw that my dad hard arrived with “the goods”. As the saying goes “a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” is pretty darn right – so if you need a quick and easy recipe then check out this one. Or just go to the store and buy a package of Nestle Tollhouse Butterscotch morsels because that is where this recipe comes from – no hassle with having to dig and find a recipe as long as you have the “right ingredient” of butterscotch morsels you are good to go (:

Enjoy

Ingredients:
1 ¼ Cups all purpose flour (I did all whole wheat this time and they tasted fantastic – plumper than usual)
1 Tsp. Baking Soda
½ Tsp. Salt
½ Tsp. Cinnamon
1 Cup (2 sticks) butter softened
¾ Cup Granulated Sugar
¾ Cup Brown Sugar (light)
2 Large Eggs
1 Tsp. Vanilla Extract
3 Cups quick or old-fashioned oats
11 oz. Package of Butterscotch Morsels

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375
Combine flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a small bowl.
Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla extract in a large mixer bowl.
Gradually beat in the flour mixture.
Stir in the Oats and Butterscotch morsels.
Drop by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake for 7-8 minutes for chewy cookies (more like 9 for the whole wheat version) and 9-10 for crisp cookies. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks and cool completely.
Recipe says it makes 4 dozen cookies – but I made closer to 5 dozen and they were a good size cookie.
Enjoy – housemates definitely enjoyed and now off to take to a group meeting!

Cheers
n