"Christmas cookies and happy hearts, this is how the holidays start." -Anonymous
So I was thinking about the cookies we really love to make and give this time of year. I wanted to mostly offer you the ones for the biggest bang for the buck. This Oatmeal Lace cookies is one of those. You can make them now and they will still be amazing come Christmas time. As long as you keep them in in airtight container in a cool, dry place, they will last and last. Humidity will be the nemesis of this cookie for long-term storage.
This is one of my daughter's favorite cookies. It has lovely caramel overtones from the brown sugar and a wonderful crisp yet light bite. The lightly toasted nuts add extra crunch and texture. I love them sandwiched with melted chocolate, my daughter prefers them without the chocolate (what does she know?!!). The chocolate serves two purposes, so I highly recommend that step. The first is well, chocolate-duh! The second is it strengthens the cookie structure. On their own these are very fragile cookies. Sandwich them with chocolate and it's a game changer. They hold together much better and the taste is divine!
Oatmeal Lace Cookies
2/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1/2 cup light corn syrup
8 tablespoons ( 1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 pinches (scant 1/8 teaspoon) kosher salt
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans, lightly toasted (Or your favorite nut-pistachio, walnuts, almonds...)
2/3 cup dried fruit (apricots, cranberries, cherries, chopped)- optional
Approx 6 ounces good quality semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped and melted -optional
1. Line several baking sheets with a Silpat or parchment paper. Set aside.
2. Whisk together flour and oats in a bowl; set aside.
3. In a medium saucepan combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring until smooth and bubbling, about 4 minutes.
4. Remove mixture from heat. Stir in flour and oats and dried fruit, if desired.
5. Transfer mixture to a bowl or covered container and refrigerate for 1 hour.
6. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
7. Roll teaspoons ( as in measuring spoon size) of dough into small balls. Place 3 inches apart on lined cookie sheets. Pat down slightly. Cookies will spread a lot when baking.
8. Bake on center rack for 8-10 minutes until bubbly and caramel colored. Remove from oven and with a small off-set spatula, gently and quickly shape the cookies into as round a shape as possible (optional but makes them pair up better and look more pleasing). Let cool completely. Continue until all dough is baked. Here are some without fruit and one with.
9. Once cookies are cooled, coat the underside of one cookie with a small amount of melted chocolate using a small off-set spatula. Sandwich together with another cookie, flat side towards chocolate, of approximately the same size and shape. Continue until you have used up all the cookies. Fortify yourself by eating any broken ones as you go. ; ) Set aside in a cool dry space to allow chocolate to set (again the cold garage is an excellent choice or just a couple minutes in the freezer).
10. Store cookies in an air-tight container, layering between pieces of parchment, in a cool dry place.
Gluten free Variation: Substitute Gluten Free rolled oats for regular oats and your favorite cup for cup gluten free flour for the all-purpose flour. I have had good results with Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 flour (blue label)