Thursday, November 4, 2010

Exploring the Flour Cookbook: Oatmeal Cookies with Dried Cranberries and White Chocolate Chunks

What does this picture say to you?

To me, it screams “turn us into cookies.” And when a plate of generally unrelated ingredients talks to me, I listen.

Earlier this year, I picked up some extra work that has me working with folks from some 30+ companies who, every six weeks, descend upon our offices in DC from all corners of the country. At our last meeting, I mentioned that I’ve been known to bake for out-of-town visitors.

“Do you take requests?”

Sure thing. The consensus was that for our November get-together, which started yesterday and wraps up today, something with oatmeal and cranberries would be just perfect from a seasonal perspective. Chocolate was a clear need as well, and I determined that white chocolate chunks would work best. It seemed everything was falling into place perfectly, except that I didn’t have an oatmeal cookie recipe in my pocket.

Then three weeks ago, David Lebovitz posted about the oatmeal raisin cookie recipe from Joanne Chang’s new cookbook. Just a week after that, I went to her bakery myself. And. Loved. It.

This wasn’t the ingredients talking to me. This was divine intervention. I had to make these cookies. Using that recipe as inspiration.


1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

2/3 cup granulated sugar

1 cup packed light brown sugar

2 large eggs, at room temperature

1 3/4 cup flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla powder

1 3/4 cup old fashioned oats

6 ounces dried cranberries

12 ounces chopped white chocolate chunks (suggest Callebaut)

The most notable changes were that I swapped in some vanilla powder and swapped out some nutmeg. And of course, dried cranberries and white chocolate chunks stand in for the raisins.

I started out by creaming the butter and sugar for five minutes.

It sure does get fluffy. While that is going on, I got all the ingredients from the flour through the white chocolate chunks mixed together in a separate bowl.

I thought that having the white chocolate chunks coated in flour would stop me from picking at them. I thought wrong. Luckily, I was almost done. I simply had to beat in the eggs one at a time, and then beat in the dry ingredient mixture on low speed until just incorporated. I then had dough.

Joanne suggests refrigerating the dough overnight. Even though she went to that other school in Cambridge, MA, she did develop the recipe, so I obliged.

Next up was baking time. I pre-heated my oven to 350° F, rolled the dough into balls about two tablespoons apiece in size, dropped them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and slightly flattened them. Since I divided the dough into half the size called for in the recipe, I baked them for a little less time – 13 minutes had them about right.

And did they ever turn out right. Hopefully the folks at my meeting today agree.


  1. Umm, yes please! Those cookies sound awesome!

    Thanks for checking out my blog...I'm assuming you found me through Heather?? She rocks doesn't she? And yes my sinuses do suck. I've been told to get a neti pot but I've been too scared to try it.

    PS I'm in Alexandria!! Yay for finding a local girl!

  2. Glad to see you here, local gal! Are you more partial to the dried cranberries or the white chocolate?

    I believe I found you through Heather's blog and liked your style, so I added you to my google reader. I saw your post come up last night, and man do I feel for you. All I can say about irrigation (and I think the Ayr system, which you can find at CVS, is best) is that I haven't had a single cold or sinus infection in over two years. And that's with daily Metro commuting.

    And let's be honest: chocolate doesn't taste as good with a sinus infection. Keeping them away is necessary.

  3. Ohmygosh- These look totally Divine!!!
    I love that brown sugar taste of oatmeal cookies and white chocolate was my fave growing up.. Mmmm :-9

  4. Isn't Joanne's recipe just mouth-watering? If you are ever in Boston, you MUST stop by her bakery. I also love white chocolate, and the tart dried cranberries mix with it so well. I'm unsure of whether that combo or dark chocoalte with dried pineapple is my favorite fruit-chocolate creation.