Friday, October 14, 2011

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

I always give my maternal grandmother overwhelming props for influencing my love of baking.  She was an accomplished baker and cook and won several local and state awards for her recipe creations.  I've often thought in the back of my mind that I would like to honor her someday by creating a recipe and entering it in a contest like she was known to do so many years ago.

Today, however, I'd like to share a recipe that I recall my paternal grandmother putting together this time of year.  She called them the "Great Pumpkin Cookie."  They combine the wholesomeness of oats and pumpkin with the sweetness of chocolate chips.  In her recipe, you're instructed to make the cookies super big and add a little glob of dough at the top to serve as the pumpkin stem.  I like to make them the traditional way.  I've never been much of one for shaped cookies.

I baked these last weekend and took several dozen to my church for a bake sale that was part of a fundraising benefit for Nationwide Children's Hospital.  I'm happy to report, there were none leftover when the bake sale ended!

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Here's What You Need:
4 cups flour
2 cups quick oats
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Here's What You Do:
Heat the oven to 350 degrees and line your cookie sheets with parchment paper.  Combine the flour, oats, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.  Set it aside.  Cream the butter with an electric mixer.  Gradually, add the sugars to the butter beating until light and fluffy.  Add the egg and vanilla and continue mixing.  Alternate additions of dry ingredients and pumpkin puree.  Add the chocolate chips.  Scoop cookie dough on the cookie sheets leaving 2-inches in between.  Bake for 10 minutes depending on how your oven runs.

These cookies are heavenly when they are warm right out of the oven.  Be sure to eat a light breakfast and lunch the day you bake these because you are going to lose control when they come out of the oven!

Note:   A typical can of pumpkin puree holds 2 cups.  Since this recipe calls for just 1 1/2 cups of the puree, I suggest you save that last bit in the fridge and the next morning, just whip up your favorite pancake batter and toss in that little bit of pumpkin puree. Butter the pancakes once they come off the griddle and then sprinkle with cinnamon.

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