So I had a bit of an epic cooking/baking night on Friday. I made ribs (with my own rub), BBQ sauce (for the first time - my husband, who LOVES BBQ sauce was like how come you held out on me and haven't made this before in the last 9 years we have been together?) cornbread, blondies and monster cookies. Phew - it was a late night and the kitchen was a MESS when I was done.
I am really in love with the Baked cookbook, even though I think my expectations on the infamous brownie was a little too high as I posted about here. So I wanted to make some cookies to take on the hike we were going on in the morning (more about that below), and wanted to try Baked again so I flipped through the pages and thought the Monster Cookie would be great to try since my hubby loves oatmeal cookies (without raisins!). I made a few changes, I used chunky peanut butter, didn't refrigerate for 5 hours since I didn't have that much time, and used milk chocolate chips in stead of semi-sweet because that is what I had.
These cookies were perfect for taking along on a hike. OK, so now I will tell you about this hike. I have lived in SF for 3 1/2 years now, and I have never really been hiking on Mt. Tam (Crazy!). For those of you who don't know SF, Mt. Tam (Tamalpais is real name) is just north of San Francisco and the Golden Gate and has 6,300 acres of redwood groves, oak woodlands, grassland slopes, chaparral and rocky ridges. So, one of my good friends recently started a business called Bay Treks and they now offer guided tours of 3 great hikes on Mt. Tam. We went on the Steep Ravine hike yesterday and it was awesome.
It was pretty cold and windy, and ended up raining (so it was not my ideal weather to say the least), and I ended up loosing the sole of one of my shoes, yeah that's right, I just walked out of it (so much for having nice warm, insulated waterproof boots) and had to walk back to the car with a ways to go on the lining of the boot. So funny right - like when does that happen? Anyhow, despite all of that I had a great time. The guides were great, the lunch was yummy and the nature breathtaking (few photos below). I highly recommend taking a hike with Bay Treks for anyone in the Bay Area or visiting.
Back to the baking - so I made these cookies for this trip and they received rave reviews from my fellow hikers. Some were eaten before the hike, and the rest were divided up as a post lunch treat. The recipe made a lot (even though I used a BIG cookie scoop - the one I usually use to dish my cupcake batter) - so I am sending a bunch with my hubby to England tomorrow!
adapted from Baked
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
5 ¾ cups rolled oats
¾ cups (1 ½ sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1 ½ cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs
¼ tsp light corn syrup
¼ tsp vanilla extract
2 cups chunky peanut butter
1 cup (6 ounces) milk or semi-sweet chocolate
1 cup (6 ounces) M&M’s
In a large bowl whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together. Add the oats and stir until combined.
In the bowl of electric mixer with paddle attachment, cream butter until smooth and pale in color. Add the sugars and mix on low speed until just incorporated. Do not overmix.
Scrape down bowl and add eggs one at a time, beating until smooth (about 20 seconds) and scraping down bowl after each edition. Add the corn syrup and vanilla and beat until incorporated.
Scrape down bowl and add peanut butter. Mix on low speed until just combined, add the oat mixture in three additions, mixing on low speed until just incorporated. (You don’t have to do all this bowl scraping if you use the new Beater Blade that scrapes the bowl while it mixes and works like a charm!)
Use a spatula or wooden spoon and fold in the chocolate chips and M&M’s. Cover bowl tightly and refrigerate for 5 hours. (I did it for and 1 ½ and they were still delicious)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Use ice cream scoop to scoop out dough into 2- tablespoon size balls on two baking sheets – 2 inches apart. Bake for 12-15 minutes (mine took about 15-17), rotating pans halfway through baking time. Let cool on pans for 8-10 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
Pictures from the hike below: