Sunday, September 19, 2010
I'm going to call these cookies Ugly Cookies. It may sound like a mean name, but in reality, I'm being kind. My husband likes to call them booger cookies. Call me old fashioned, but I don't get all that excited about eating anything that has the word booger in the name. The cookbook I adapted the recipe from (which incidentally has the cover missing, so I know nothing else about it other than the fact that it has a brown spine and holds lots of wonderful recipes) calls them chocolate oatmeal peanut butter cookies--that's a bit long for practical purposes. For a while I tried to use an acronym, but I couldn't ever remember it. Whenever I tried to tell people about these cookies (which is embarrassingly often), I'd sputter a bunch of letters for a minute then finally just describe them as chocolate oatmeal peanut butter cookies. By then the person had lost interest in me and the cookies. They're also usually wondering if I have some sort of speech impediment.
Ok, I realize after that little paragraph, I may have just lost your interest too. Stick with me, friends! We can make it through this!
These are my all time favorite cookies. These are the ones my grandmother makes for me every time I come home, and the ones that came in my college care packages. They involve one pan, no oven, and are so quick I can make a batch on my lunch break (and have done so on several occasions).
For years, I went with the original recipe, which called for evaporated milk instead of sour cream. In a moment when my usually stocked cupboard failed me, I made the substitution (it was either sour cream or mayonnaise, so I flipped a coin). "Dost my taste buds deceive me?! Even better than the original?" Indeed. With the sour cream, they stay softer over the course of the few days they last prior to consumption, and they are much less likely to fall apart on you.
With no further ado, allow me to present:
Adapted from an unknown cookbook
1 stick (8 tbs.) unsalted butter
1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups sugar
4 tbs. cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup peanut butter
3 cups oatmeal (quick or original)
Lay out a large sheet of wax or parchment paper on the counter, and have a dinner spoon ready to go next to it. Melt butter in pan over medium heat then add sour cream, sugar, cocoa, and salt. Mix together until there are no lumps and allow to simmer for a minute and a half, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. If you have people who are not peanut butter lovers like my little sister and mother, add the vanilla and oatmeal and mix well (I add the oatmeal a cup at a time for easier stirring). Spoon out as many peanut butter-less cookies as you want onto the wax paper. Note: The cookies without peanut butter will not set as firmly as the ones with. They also will not be nearly as tasty. When you are ready to have peanut butter in your cookies, add the peanut butter (adjust the amount according to how many cookies you've already taken out). Spoon the rest of the cookies onto the wax paper and allow to sit until dry. I usually try to give mine about half an hour or so, but a little longer is probably better. Store in a ziploc bag after they dry.