Author Notes: Near my elementary school, there was a tiny shop named The Women’s Exchange, where church-y ladies sold handcrafted doodads and homemade treats. We often stopped in for their cookies – the best were called, in characteristic no-nonsense fashion, Cereal Cookies. Years later I tried to replicate them, never quite getting it right. Eventually I came up with a pretty good facsimile of my childhood favorite, or more importantly, my memory of it.
Delicate, crunchy, buttery and caramel-y, they're more like a confection than a traditional thick & chewy oatmeal cookie. They're my son's favorite too, so around the holidays I usually make a few batches on demand. —amysarah
Makes: about 30 cookies
cup unsalted butter at room temp.
cup white sugar
cup light brown sugar
teaspoons vanilla extract
teaspoon salt (slightly heaping)
tablespoons flour (1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon)
cups old-fashioned (not instant) oatmeal
Optional: 1/3-1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts or chopped semi-sweet chocolate (or mini-chips); or 3-4 Tablespoons dried currants; or any combo thereof.*
- Beat butter and sugar together. Next, beat in vanilla, salt and flour. Mix in oats until evenly incorporated, then any optional ingredients you're using.
- 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 handle.
- 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 – I use the bottom of a small glass.
- 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, any of the optional additions work well too, just don’t overdo the fixing/cookie ratio.*
- This recipe was entered in the contest for The Recipe You're Most Proud Of
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Holiday Cookie from Anywhere in the World