It’s official. I’ve caught the fall baking bug (which, by the way, is way more enjoyable than the stomach flu bug). For the past few days, all I can think about is baking with apples, pumpkin, and lots and lots of cinnamon and nutmeg.
These cookies got the distinction of being my first fall treat of 2010 for the simple reason I already had all the ingredients and the recipe was quick. It was easy and tasty and fall-y–everything I was looking for. The end result here is much like an oatmeal cookie with raisins, only the spices are different and the dates add a different kind of sweetness that raisins. If you are a fan of oatmeal cookies and/or fall treats, please give this one a try. You and your taste testers will be glad you did!
Oatmeal, Date, and Walnut Spice Cookies
adapted from www.williams-sonoma.com
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. whole-wheat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
16 TBSP (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 c. firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 c. granulated sugar
3 TBSP dark molasses
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/2 c. old-fashioned rolled oats
1 c. chopped pitted dates
1/2 c. coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling (optional)
1. Preheat an oven to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, baking mats, or foil sprayed with cooking spray.
2. In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice; set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high speed until fluffy and pale yellow. Add the sugars and continue beating until the mixture is no longer gritty when rubbed between your finger and thumb.
4. Reduce the speed to low and add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the molasses and vanilla.
5. Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed or stir with a wooden spoon just until blended.
6. Beat or stir in the oats, dates and walnuts just until evenly distributed.
7. Using a cookie scoop or tablespoon, drop the batter onto the prepared sheets, spacing the cookies about two inches apart. Bake until the edges are golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle the cookies with coarse sugar while they are still warm, if desired.
8. Let the cookies cool on the pans on wire racks for ten minutes, then transfer them to the racks and let cool completely. Makes about five dozen cookies.