Oh dear, I'm late yet again for Tuesdays with Dorie. I'm sorry, folks -- work has been busy with everyone ordering back-to-school merchandise (and then checking on when it is going to arrive). I'm glad I finally found time to make this week's recipe, Granola Grabbers, chosen by Michelle of Bad Girl Baking. They were tasty!
These called for lots of yummy ingredients, most of which I already had in the pantry. Granola, though, was not one of them. I had a good time looking at all the bins at our favorite market, the Willy Street Co-op, and settled on some nice Six Grain granola from local Nature's Bakery. When it came time to bake, though, I found I hadn't gotten quite enough. Thinking fast, I topped it off with about 1/3 of a cup of Grape-Nuts cereal. Instead of peanuts, I used salted cashews -- Jim loves them so we always have some around. They're big so I chopped them coarsely. Oops, we only had unsweetened coconut, but since we don't like things all that sweet, I just went with that. The raisins were nice and plump, but the coconut was so dry I had to sprinkle in quite a bit of water and let it sit. I added just a little cinnamon and ginger to the flour for a hint of spice, and 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder for a bit of lift.
You've probably seen lots of posts about the recent New York times recipe for chocolate cookies. One of their "secrets" is to let the dough sit in the refrigerator before baking. Well, I was busy and ending up doing that with this dough. I meant to let it sit for one day, but it ended up sitting for two. I wish I had a chance to compare my cookies with some "fresh-mixed" ones to see if it made any difference. Certainly they were still good! I had to let the dough warm up a bit as it was rock solid. After that I had no trouble scooping it out -- oh boy, a chance to use my purple portion scooper! I got it a while ago and have only used it once or twice.
For baking, I went with a 350 degrees convection bake setting for good air circulation around the cookie sheets. Despite Dorie's warning, I used double-layer air-insulated baking sheets. They worked just fine, actually. Mine are the newer design with little "dimples" all over the bottom to let a little more heat come through the bottom. They do a good job of browning without burning. My dough was still cold when it went into the oven, and it hardly spread at all. I'm glad I flattened the cookies down.
I let the cookies cool on the sheets -- a hint I read somewhere, I think it was Cook's Illustrated, for the best chewy cookies.
These were good cookies, a bit on the sweet side but not too sweet, crunchy and chewy, full of tasty nuggets. They also held up well to the humid weather--the granola kept its crunch even as the cookies got moist and chewy. Neither Jim nor I are absolutely crazy about this style of cookie, but that didn't stop us from eating quite a few of them! The rest went into work where they were devoured with great enthusiasm!