Friday, November 1, 2013

almond oatmeal lace cookies

Happy November! I love everything about this time of year - crisp days, cozy nights, days filled with laughter, friends, and FOOD! These lace cookies are the perfect recipe to ring in the baking season. The ingredient list isn't too long, the dough comes together quick, and the result is a buttery and elegant cookie that's just begging to be taken to a family party or a cookie exchange.

This recipe is adapted from an old standby cookbook in my mom's cookbook library. And yes, I did say library - her collection is extensive! Mom has her own little cataloging system. Unfortunately, I haven't quite figured out her system and always forget where each book belongs. Such a source of shame to my inner librarian! In my defense, they are lacking proper spine labels :) Anyway, the original recipe comes from Steven Schmidt's Master Recipes. I adapted it to include some nuttiness with the almonds and a wonderful complimenting drizzle of chocolate on top. Every great cookie deserves a small dose of chocolate!
2 sticks salted butter
1/2 c. white sugar
1/4 c. packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tbsp all purpose flour
1 1/4 c. oats
3/4 c. ground almonds
4 oz. semi sweet or dark chocolate

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Melt butter in saucepan over low heat
3. Remove from heat and beat the sugar in first then egg and flour. I pour the melted butter into my stand mixer and let the mixer do the work.
4. Stir in oats and almonds. Don't worry if the dough looks too liquidy - the butter will begin to solidfy as it cools. I did need to add another tablespoon of oats to my dough because the egg I used was abnormally large.
5. Drop slightly heaped teaspoons of batter at least 2 1/2 inches apart onto prepared baking sheets. Flatten mounds of batter slightly with finger and push in jagged edges.
6. Bake in batches on prepared baking sheets for 8-9 minutes in preheated oven until cookies have spread and browned nicely around the rims. I found that using a silpat works beautifully with these cookies. If you don't have one, use parchment.
7. Let cookies cool a minute or two on sheet then transfer to parchment lined cooling rack.
8. Once the cookies cool, melt chocolate over double broiler.
9. Decorate your cookies. Here's your options: drizzle with melted chocolate, use a pastry brush and brush half of each cookie gently, or dip the bottoms of the cookies so the back side is coated in a light layer of chocolate. I prefer drizzling. It's the messiest, prettiest, and easiest way to decorate!
10. Cookies keep for two to three days in an airtight container. I keep mine in the fridge, and bring them to room temperature before eating. You can also freeze them in airtight containers, but enjoy within two months time.
The original recipe said it makes four dozen 2 1/2 inch cookies. I made mine a bit larger and got a little over three dozen.
P.S. The buttery, nutty smell of these cookies is intoxicating. I could barely resist eating another one while getting this shot. Taste testing is always the best part!

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