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  • Writer's pictureCulinary Cam

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies #FoodiesReads

I was inspired to make these cookies after reading The Last of the Moon Girls by Barbara Davis.


The eponymous - last of the Moon girls - character is Lizzy Moon. She is a successful perfumer who returns from New York City to her hometown of Salem Creek when her grandmother, Althea, dies. It has long been the small town's belief that all of the Moon girls are witches and that Althea was responsible for a double homicide of two teenage sisters.


Lizzy gets drawn into her grandmother's Book of Remembrances and decides to clear Althea's name before selling Moon Girl Farm. There was the murder mystery aspect of the book and there is also a budding romance between Lizzy and her childhood friend Andrew. This was an engaging story with interesting characters. If you like magical realism, mystery, romance, and journeys of self-discovery, this is for you.


There was plenty of foodie inspiration. "She opened a bottle of chardonnay and poured herself a generous glass, then paused to water the herb pots she kept on the sill. Rosemary, for remembrance. Basil, for courage. Thyme, for warding off nightmares. It was the catechism of her childhood—the catechism of all the Moon girls. On impulse, she plucked a basil leaf from the plant on the sill and rolled it between her palms, releasing its savory-sweet fragrance—peppery, anise-like, faintly minty. It was one of her favorite aromatics, perhaps because it reminded her of happy times spent cooking in her grandmother’s kitchen" (pg. 11).


"Evvie was in the kitchen when she came in, pulling something golden and fragrant from the oven. The smell of warm blueberries hung in the air. Lizzy looked at the pan on the stove and thought of Althea. No one made blueberry cobbler like Althea, but this one looked—and smelled—awfully close. 'You made cobbler,' she said, smiling at Evvie. 'I love cobbler.' 'Your gran told me'" (pp. 92-93).


"An hour and a half later, Lizzy was waterlogged but soot-free, and the investigators’ SUV was gone. In the kitchen, she opened a bottle of chardonnay and poured herself a glass, then pulled an eggplant, a green pepper, and several zucchini from the fridge. Cooking had always been a refuge for her, a calming, almost meditative act, and if there was anything she could do with just now, it was a little calm" (pg. 184).


But what sent me into the kitchen was this passage (pg. 163)...

The Lunch Lady—who smelled of violets and talcum powder, and had been kind to a girl who spent every lunch hour with her nose in a book. Sometimes an extra Jell-O had found its way onto her tray. Or a second cookie, when they were oatmeal raisin, because they were her favorite.

Oatmeal raisin cookies are my mom's favorite, so I don't think I realized just how polarizing raisins in cookies were until I made a batch of oatmeal raisin cookies and shared photos on social media. Responses ran the gamut from...

  • It's okay to have these for breakfast since it's just oatmeal and raisin in a different format, right?

  • These are my favorite!

  • I highly recommend replacing raisins with chocolate chips. Makes them about 1 million times better.

  • My boys hate raisins so I make oatmeal chocolate chip.

  • And, in response to the comment above, Thank you for being the voice of reason in all of this raisin nonsense!

I fall somewhere in between there. I wouldn't say they are my favorite - gingerbread holds that honor! - but I don't despise raisins in my cookies.



Ingredients

makes approximately three dozen 2" cookies


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

  • 3/4 cup organic dark brown sugar, lightly packed

  • 1/2 cup organic granulated sugar

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

  • 1-1/2 cups flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1-1/2 cups raisins

  • 3 cups rolled oats

  • Also needed: baking sheets, parchment paper, cookie scoop (optional)



Procedure

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.


In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugars. Once that mixture if lightened and fluffy, beat in the eggs one at a time until fully combined. Beat in the vanilla.


In a medium mixing bowl, blend together the flour, baking soda, and cinnamon. Stir the dry ingredients into the butter-sugar mixture. Stir in the oats. Fold in the raisins.


Scoop out the dough by large tablespoonfuls - I use a cookie scoop - onto prepared cookie sheets, leaving at least 2 inches between each cookie. These flatten out and spread as they bake.


Place trays in the oven and bake until the edges of the cookies turn golden brown, approximately 16 to 18 minutes.


Let the cookies cool for 3 to 4 minutes on the sheets. Then carefully transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. Store tightly covered.


I am linking this post to the November round-up for #FoodieReads. Find that here.

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1 Comment


Wendy Klik
Wendy Klik
Nov 19, 2023

Cookies with coffee for breakfast is always a wonderful thing. Happy Thanksgiving Cam.

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