I don’t have many “favorite” recipes. Instead, I enjoy variety… My favorite dish is whatever I’m in the mood for today, and it will probably be different than tomorrow’s favorite.
These cranberry oatmeal cookies are a different story. I made them around Thanksgiving a few years ago (yes, years), and they have been a favorite of my friends, family, and even neighbors (thanks to last year’s bake sale) ever since. Everyone raves about them and specifically asks for them when I offer to bake, but here’s the thing… It’s not even MY recipe!
I have developed quite a few of my own recipes, which you already know if you read my blog at all. But, I am not against making a recipe out of a cookbook or testing a recipe that I find online. In fact, I do it quite often (although, I don’t always follow the directions very well… ). I just haven’t posted many of my favorite non-original recipes here on my site because I don’t like to re-print someone else’s recipe unless I have made significant changes to it.
But, today I thought I’d do something a bit different. You probably are already familiar with one of my favorite food blogs – In Jennie’s Kitchen. Well, this week Jennifer is hosting a giveaway to support Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a great organization that is raising awareness about pediatric cancer and also helping to raise funds to support research. By participating in Jennifer’s giveaway, you will be helping to support a great cause, and you’ll also have the chance to win some really great prizes (which you can re-gift as Mother’s Day gifts if you like… I won’t tell). Just think of the impact your donation could have for a mother whose child is suffering from cancer… That’s reward enough, isn’t it? For all of the details about making a donation and the giveaway, visit In Jennie’s Kitchen (and also check out the Deep Chocolate Cherry Cashew Cookies… YUM)!
Since we’re talking about cookies for a cause, I thought I’d share with you the source of my infamous Cranberry Oatmeal cookies… They are from this recipe over at the Food Network (you can pick up your jaw from the floor now).
Now, we all know that I don’t follow directions very well, so here’s what I typically change when I make these cookies… I usually add an extra 1/2 cup of all purpose flour to the recipe. I find that the cookies come out a bit chewier, which I like. I also add about 1 cup of white chocolate chips because I like the flavor of the white chocolate with the cranberries.
But, if you really want to know my secret for perfectly soft and chewy cookies… Here it is: Don’t bake them too long! It may seem self-explanatory, but I have seen many good cookie recipes ruined simply because the cookies were left in the oven for far too long. If the recipe says 10-12 minutes, like this one does, set your timer for 9 minutes and check on them. You want the tops to be slightly golden and set (not glossy and gooey looking). If you’re not sure, try doing a “test sheet” with one or two cookies on it to figure out exactly how long the cookies should bake for. Then, you can set the timer on the oven for that perfect length of time and not worry about it for the rest of the batch! (Just be sure to let your test cookies cool before deciding on the length of time because the cookies will harden a bit as they cool.)
Ok, so now you all are equipped to run off and make some of my favorite cranberry oatmeal cookies. But, before you do, please take a minute to stop by In Jennie’s Kitchen and help her fight pediatric cancer!