Thursday, September 22, 2011

Cowboy Cookies

Ever since I joined a group of food bloggers (see their links below) to pay tribute to the Gourmet Live list of 50Women Game-Changers in the food world by posting a recipe from each on Fridays, I seem to learn something new about the food world every week.

This week I discovered dessert queen Maida Heatter—and the best oatmeal cookies I’ve ever tasted!

Maida went from jewelry designer to restaurateur (with her husband, Ralph), to cookbook author. Her culinary training came from her mother, reading cookbooks, and her own kitchen trials. Perhaps that’s why her recipes are detailed and easy to follow. And if you need a dessert recipe, chances are Maida has the perfect one in the pages of her numerous cookbooks.

I love these Colorado Cowboy Cookies. According to Maida, in Colorado, any oatmeal cookie that contains chocolate chips is called a cowboy cookie. She also said these crispy cookies will keep well in a cookie jar. (If mine every make it to the cookie jar!)

Colorado Cowboy Cookies
From Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Chocolate Desserts
Makes 36 cookies

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 pound (1 stick) sweet butter [I used unsalted butter and it worked fine.]
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
1 egg
1 cup quick-cooking or regular rolled oats [I used the regular.]
3 ounces (1/2 cup) semisweet chocolate morsels
2 ounces (generous 1/2 cup) walnuts or pecans, cut or broken into medium-size pieces (I used walnuts.)

Adjust two racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with aluminum foil.

Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt and set aside. In the large bowl of an electric mixer cream the butter. Add the vanilla and then both sugars and beat well. Add the egg and beat well. On low speed gradually add the sifted dry ingredients and beat, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula, until incorporated.

Remove the bowl from the mixer. Stir in the oats and then the chocolate morsels and nuts. Transfer to small bowl for ease in handling. (The dough will be rather stiff.) [I did not do this—wasn’t necessary.]

Use a well-rounded (slightly less than heaping) teaspoonful of the dough to make each cookie. Place the mounds 2 inches apart on the aluminum foil. Bake for about 18 minutes until the cookies are golden-colored and completely dry. [Note: The cookies only took 12 minutes to bake in my oven, so be sure to check on the first batch often to determine how long to leave them in!] During baking reverse the sheets top to bottom and front to back to insure even browning.

If you bake only one sheet at a time, bake on the upper rack.

With a wide metal spatula transfer the cookies to racks to cool. When completely cool, store them airtight.

Here are my fellow food bloggers. Be sure to check them out!

Nancy - Picadillo


  1. If I could only have one cookie with me on a desert island, this would be it, they have it all!

  2. Oh, if your description weren't enough to entice me, then the name would reel me in...hard to resist. Excellent intro :D

  3. Yes I don't see hoe these could make it as far as the cookie jar Linda.Nuts, oats and chocolate make for cookie perfection.

  4. Oh, cowboy cookies are one of my favorites. These look delicious and just loaded with goodness. Glad you can join us!

  5. These cookies have to be so addictive...what with the chocolate, nuts and oats. They are gorgeous! Great pick!

  6. Just mouthwatering...looks so easy to prepare and delicious.

  7. These were so popular around here I may have to make another batch!

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