Or is it #8? If you have school-age children, you know what I am talking about. Every year a rite of school year passage involves a bake sale, or two, or ten. I find myself baking throughout the school year to raise money for field trips, dances, class parties and charities. Over the years I have learned a few lessons. For instance, 5 year-olds are not as fond of rich dark chocolate as adults. Or that the term “healthy” really isn’t appropriate or welcome at a bake sale, despite maternal instict. Or that there is an alarming number of peanut allergies in the U.S. (interestingly, far more so than in Europe), with these allergies resulting in schoolwide nut-free policies as locked down as a demilitarized zone. And, finally, if not most importantly: Size does matter. So, after my earlier laughable attempts at flourless-triple-dark-chocolate-truffles, carrot cakes packed with grains, dried fruit, flax and wheat bran, or (even worse) anything containing peanut-butter, I am now a seasoned, if not broken, bake sale contributor.
My latest contribution is a batch of Cranberry Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies. Catering to the discerning audience of my children’s primary and middle school, I took a basic chcolate chip cookie and ramped it up a bit, adding white chocolate chips and dried cranberries. After all, as the bake sale motto goes, less is not more – and if you inadvertently dump an entire container of psychedelic candy sprinkles over your creation, all the better.
Cranberry Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
Makes 16 if size matters
8 oz. (1/2 lb. or 225 g.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup oats
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup dried cranberries, chopped
Preheat oven to 350 F. (180 C.)
Cream butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl until pale in color, light and fluffy.
Add egg and mix well to combine. Stir in vanilla and cinnamon.
Sift flour, salt and baking soda together in a mixing bowl. Add to batter and stir to combine well. Mix in oats. Stir in chocolate chips and dried cranberries. Drop spoonfuls of dough on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake in oven until golden brown, 12-15 minutes. Remove and cool on rack.