I am currently sitting in my living room, plastic hanging, dust clinging to the furniture, and a hole in my ceiling. The refrigerator and stove are within three feet of the couch, the dining room chairs are stacked near the coffee table. My sink is sitting on top a stack of junk in the back of my grandpa’s old Chevy truck in the driveway.
My husband and I are currently in the midst of a kitchen renovation. It has been a long time coming and we finally decided to pull the trigger. We spent a lot of time researching, drafting designs, and procrastinating because of the great deal of work we anticipated it would entail. We wanted to tackle the renovation ourselves which we knew would require a substantial time investment but hopefully would save money in the long run.
While having a new kitchen will be little less than a dream come true in the end, the process is tough. Especially since I love to cook and bake which I can’t do without a kitchen. As a result, I’ve been forced to create simple meals that don’t require a lot of pots, pans, ingredients or dishes. While I may have had to pare down the amount of work in the kitchen I usually do, the desire hasn’t gone away. And I’ve had to get a little creative at times but it has usually been worth it.
This past week, I pulled up an old recipe for oatmeal raisin cookies I came across a few years ago. However, I don’t particularly like raisins in my cookies so I substituted chocolate chips which is without a doubt how they should be made. I also added sea salt, another good choice. This recipe is simple, quick, and doesn’t take more than a bowl or two which was essential given our current kitchen situation, or lack thereof. No need to cream the butter and sugar or sift the flour ahead of time. You simply mix the dry and wet ingredients separately, then combine. Add the chocolate chunks, and then roll them into balls on a cookie sheet, flatten a bit with your hand or a spatula and stick them in the oven. After 11 minutes, no more no less, these cookies are perfection. Slightly crispy on the edges, soft and chewy in the middle, large chunks of good quality dark chocolate, hearty flavor from the molasses and maple syrup, and dusted with the best–Maldon’s flaky sea salt. These only make a small batch so you may want to double the recipe. Or it may just be the perfect amount when a weeknight craving hits. I also like to make these into ice cream sandwiches with some creamy coconut ice cream in the middle.
Salted Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies
Makes 6-9 cookies
Adapted from Dreena Burton‘s Oatmeal Raisin cookies
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp all-purpose gluten free flour
1/8 cup finely ground almond flour
1/8 cup oat flour
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ cup gluten-free old-fashioned oats
¼ cup unrefined sugar (e.g., coconut sugar) or beet sugar
¼ cup dark chocolate chips
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp sea salt
¼ cup pure maple syrup
¼–½ tsp blackstrap molasses
1½ tsp pure vanilla extract
¼ cup organic canola oil
Flaky sea salt
Preheat oven to 350ºF and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat. In a bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, oats, sugar, cinnamon, and salt until well combined. In a separate bowl, combine syrup, molasses, and vanilla, then stir in oil to incorporate. Add wet mixture to dry and stir until just well combined (do not over-mix). Fold in chocolate chips. Spoon batter onto baking sheet and flatten slightly. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Bake for exactly 11 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool on baking sheet for a minute or two and then transfer to a cooling rack.
This recipe is gluten-free and vegan. However, the original recipe calls for spelt flour instead of the all-purpose gluten free, almond, and oat flours. Feel free to make this substitution, if desired. Otherwise, these cookies are gluten-free and vegan.