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Author Notes: There was a shop called The Women’s Exchange near my school when I was a kid. They made delicious cookies, simply called ‘Cereal Cookies,' that we often stopped in for. I tried for years to replicate them, never getting it quite right. Finally about a ten years ago, I came across a recipe that ‘read’ similarly. Unfortunately it’s scribbled on a piece of notebook paper, and I have no recollection of its origin. Regardless, I’ve changed it up so much over time – modified or added ingredients, changed quantities, baking directions, etc. - that I think it’s crossed that nebulous line into being a different recipe. These aren't identical twins of the childhood cookies that inspired them, more like first cousins.
These are delicate, crunchy, buttery and caramel-y – more like a confection than a traditional thick & chewy oatmeal cookie. They’re my son’s favorite (he’ll get the double-entendre in the name, but matricide could be in my future, were I to divulge.)
Makes about 30 cookies
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temp.
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (slightly heaping)
- 5 tablespoons flour (1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon)
- 1 1/2 cup old-fashioned (not instant) oatmeal
- Optional: 1/3-1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts; or chopped semi-sweet chocolate (or mini-chocolate chips); or 3-4 Tablespoons dried currants; or any combo there of, just don’t overdo the fixing to cookie ratio.*
- Beat butter and sugar together. Next, beat in vanilla, salt and flour. Mix in oats until evenly incorporated, then any optional ingredients, if you’re using them.
- Refrigerate dough (covered) for at least an hour; I’ve often left it overnight. Take out of fridge a little while before next step, to make it a bit easier to roll.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll balls from scant tablespoons of dough. Space them about 3” apart on a parchment lined pan. Flatten each ball to about ¼” thick – the bottom of a small glass works well.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, turning pan midway, until cookies' edges are brown and centers are slightly bubbly. Remove pan from oven - If any have spread together, separate with a knife or spatula edge while still very soft.
- Let sit 2-3 minutes to firm up a bit before removing with a spatula to a cooling rack; cool before eating. Stores well in an airtight container.
- * Personally, I like these best 'as are,' but if you’re inclined to dress them up, they’re pretty delicious with any of the optional additions too.