Zucchini-Carrot Cookies

Zucchini-Carrot Oatmeal Cookies

Every year, the further we advance into summer, the more abundant the zucchini and carrots seem to be. I’ve known some years when gardens produced so many zucchinis that people almost shuttered their windows when they see anyone coming up the walk with produce from their garden! Anyway, this is a simple, chewy sort of plain cookie that makes a good snack with a cold glass of milk or afternoon cup of hot tea.

½ cup butter
3/4 cup honey
1 large egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
grated zest of one orange
½ cup finely grated zucchini
½ cup finely grated carrots
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup of one or a combination of the following: chopped dates, raisins, dried cranberries, or dried apricots.

Preat oven to 375 degrees. Use vegetable oil spray or parchment to prepare baking sheets.

Cream together the butter and honey. Blend in the egg and beat well. Combine the dry ingredients and mix in alternately with the zucchini-carrot mixture. Stir in the oats and chosen dried fruits.

Drop by teaspoonsful on prepared baking sheets. Bake for approximately 10 minutes depending on your oven. Makes about four dozen cookies.

For an added treat either dip tops in melted chocolate or glaze with lemon icing. Your children might not even guess about the vegetables and fiber you are sneaking into the cookies.

California Cowboy Cookies

Did I ever mention that I love oatmeal cookies of most any kind? That might explain why I always seem to have another oatmeal cookie recipe to post.

California Cowboy Cookies

This is a fun cookie and is open to most any change you’d like to make to it. If you like to make it more spicy, cinnamon works here. You can use any flavor of chocolate chips you prefer. I like walnuts but if I have pecans on hand, you will find that change in my cookie.

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup white baking chips
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Blend the dry ingredients together and set aside. Beat the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, extract, and zest. Mix well. Add dry ingredients and mix until just blended. Stir in baking chips and walnuts.

Form dough into 1/4 cup balls. Place on greased baking sheets, about 2 inches apart. Flatten to approximately 3-inch rounds. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are lightly golden and browned around the edges. Cool on wire racks. Makes about 30 cookies, depending on size.

Gluten-free at your house, too? King Arthur’s Cup for Cup Gluten-Free Flour Blend works well here, too, as does BetterBatter Flour Blend.

 

Cookie Giants

As I was looking for something to cook for dinner in the freezer, this morning, I came across some great ingredients left from Christmas baking and decided to make a batch of cookies. This cookie recipe has a lot of leeway in what you want to add but here is how I devised my version.

Cookie Giants

2 cups creamy peanut butter
2/3 cup softened butter
1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon corn syrup
1 tablespoon freshly grated orange zest
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups uncooked oatmeal
3 cups all-purpose flour (I went gluten-free and used King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten-Free blend)
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chocolate M&M’s
1 cup roughly chopped pecans
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup English toffee baking bits

In a large mixing bowl, cream together the peanut butter, butter, and sugars until fluffy. Beat in the eggs, baking soda, vanilla, cinnamon, orange zest. and corn syrup. Add in the oatmeal and flour and stir in to combine. Add in the the rest of the ingredients making sure to distribute them evenly in the dough.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop up 1/4 cup portions of the dough and place them on the prepared baking sheet about three inches apart to allow for spreading. Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until the cookies are nicely browned and set.

Crispy Crunchy Garbage Cookies

The debates are coming up so why not bake something to enjoy even as we may choke a bit on one or the other candidate’s political faux pas. My treat of choice, given the occasion would be Crispy Crunchy Garbage Cookies. It is a long-time favorite of my family so hope it’s good memories won’t be tainted in view of the debate.

This recipe has lots of room for additions and subtraction of ingredients although it my require a bit more or less flour in some instance but you can tell from the texture of the dough. The recipe calls for shortening which is what gives it the crunch. Want a chewier cookie, substitute butter for the shortening.

Crispy Crunchy Garbage Cookies

1 cup shortening
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Grated zest of one lemon
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup flaked cereal (raisin bran provided raisins)
½ cup roughly chopped walnuts
½ cup shredded coconut

Cream shortening and add sugars gradually, continuing to cream until light and fulffy. Add eggs, vanilla, zest, and spices. Mix well. Add flour and baking soda to blend. Fold in oats, cereal, nuts, and coconut.

Drop by tablespoons onto either a parchment lined or lightly greased baking sheet. Bake approximately ten minutes in preheated 375 degree oven. Let rest on baking sheet a moment before removing to cooling rack. Makes about 4-5 dozen cookies.

The cookies do spread but how much depends on the weather (dry or damp), your oven, etc. I always do a trial batch with about four on the baking sheet to see how much room I will actually have to allow.

Thanksgiving Thinking . . . Snacking Oatmeal Cookies!

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November first shows up and you know it is countdown to Thanksgiving. I try and plan ahead but there are always last-minute panic attacks that disappear once the turkey exits the oven and friends and family are nothing but happy with the holiday food placed in front of them. The days leading up to the feasting day can be testy, however, My thought is making a big batch of something fun and sort of healthy to ward off unhappy ‘spirits’ as they get anxious for the real day and are tired of quick meals in order to make time for the big, Thursday meal in November.

My favorite go-to snack has always been oatmeal cookies! I have a multitude of recipes but this is one of my favorites. They go together easily and if things get really testy in the preceding days, I’ve found that sandwiching two  cookies around a small scoop of ice cream is a miraculous tonic.

Barbara’s Favorite Oatmeal Everything Cookies

Recipe:
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, well-beaten
1 Tablespoon (yes tablespoon) vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 cups oatmeal (quick cooking or old fashioned, not instant)
1 cup raisins or dried cranberries
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Zest of one orange

The key is to soak the raisins or dried cranberries. This makes all the difference in the world. Beat eggs and vanilla together and then add the raisins or dried cranberries, stir. Soak for about an hour.

Directions:
Preheat to 350 degrees

Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. Stir the dry ingredients until well blended. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture and mix well. Now add in the egg and raisin or cranberry mixture. Then add oatmeal and chocolate chips/nuts. zest and combine well. Form into balls on cookie sheet. Bake 10-15 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheet for 2-5 minutes or until firm enough to transfer to wire rack.