SMiLes by Meg

Cherry Pistachio Oatmeal Cookies

This was one of those weekends where the only way I was going to have time to bake was if I pulled out Weeknight Baking. And made drop cookies, which are, besides bar cookies, the least time intensive baked good I can make.

In looking at cookies, I decided to go with an oatmeal base, because I like the chewiness that comes with that. However, I am a firm anti-raisin baker, so I needed something else to go in them. Fortunately, Weeknight Baking had a solution: cherries and pistachios.

Dried cherries are actually my favorite dried fruit. They’re a bit bigger than craisins, and a little more sweet-tart in flavor, and now I know they do well baked into a cookie. Pistachios are a nut I don’t often think of for cookies, but the pairing worked really well!

Start by mixing together the dried cherries and pistachios in a small bowl. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, granulated sugar and dark brown sugar on medium high speed for a couple minutes, until light and fluffy.

Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat on low until combined. I decided to buy fancy vanilla extract this week, mostly because the normal Whole Foods brand I get wasn’t in stock, so I felt justified shelling out. Plus I’ve been meaning to do it for awhile – ingredients can really step up your baking game.

With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture and beat until just combined.

Add the oats all at once and beat to incorporate.

Finally, beat in your mix-ins (the cherries and pistachios) until fully distributed.

The next revolutionary kitchen tool I got to test out for the first time this week was my cookie scoop!

After watching enough instagram videos, I obviously decided I needed one. I mean, how can I even call myself a blogger if I’m still doing the two-spoons-to-keep-your-hands-clean maneuver.

Good news: cookie scoops are also worth it. Scoop the dough into 2 tablespoon balls about 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (or SilPats if you, like me, are trying to use less single-use stuff for 2020!).

How satisfying are those perfect little balls? Next I need to get the circle cookie cutter to make the end cookies perfect, too, a la Smitten Kitchen.

Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes, until edges are golden. Remove from oven and leave on baking sheet for 20 minutes, until cookies firm up.

This step, leaving them on the warm sheet, is actually what I think makes them chewy. If you want crispy oatmeal cookies, check out my favorite cookie recipe ever for the tip of a lifetime – cooling cookies on newspapers.

Once cool, transfer to a wire rack.

Madison and I ate these warm, but I actually believe cookies are best a couple days out, as long as you store them in an airtight container – the flavor is a little more mixed together, if that makes sense.

Enjoy!

Cherry Pistachio Oatmeal Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (5 ounces) dried cherries
  • 1/2 cup(2.5 ounces) shelled pistachios
  • 1 1/4 cups (5.65 ounces) flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup (5 ounces) dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/3 cup (2.35 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (6 ounces) butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups (6.15 ounces) old-fashioned oats

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, toss together cherries and pistachios. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
  3. In a stand mixer fitted with he paddle attachment, beat brown sugar, granulated sugar and butter on medium high speed for 2 minutes, until light and fluffy.
  4. Add egg and vanilla extract and beat on medium-low speed to combine.
  5. With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture until just incorporated.
  6. Add oats all at once and beat to combine, scraping down sides with rubber spatula as necessary.
  7. Add cherries and pistachios and beat until evenly distributed.
  8. Scoop dough into 2 tablespoon balls and place about 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  9. Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes, until edges golden. Allow to rest 20 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to wire rack.

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