Because it’s snowing terribly outside, I decided to make oatmeal raisin cookies today. I was supposed to go to the mall to do Christmas shopping, pick up my cap and gown, and sell some textbooks back at the library, but the snow on the ground was discouraging so I stayed in my warm apartment.
I made some applesauce the other night and it was delicious, so I decided to make some more and add it to the cookies. That was a good call; they came out great.
Quick Applesauce Recipe:
To make the applesauce, just chop up an apple and boil it in an inch of water for about ten minutes. Then mix it in a blender with the remaining water – one apple will make a little more than a half cup of applesauce. If you want, add a bit of sparkling apple cider instead of water.
Oatmeal Raisin Applesauce Cookies
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup applesauce
- 1 egg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups oats
- 3/4 cup raisins
- Preheat over to 375F. Spray cookie sheet with nonstick spray. Soak raisins in hot water for 10 minutes, then drain.
- Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together. Set aside.
- Beat together butter (softened) and sugar. Add the egg, vanilla, and applesauce.
- Stir in the flour, then the oats and raisins.
- Use a teaspoon to drop the cookies on the cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
I decided to try a twist on the bread that I’ve made a few times – I added oatmeal! I used half oatmeal, half flour, but it would work with all flour as well.
Whole Wheat Oatmeal Bread Recipe
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup hot water
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/4 cup almond milk
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 5 teaspoons melted butter
- 2.5 – 3 cups of whole wheat flour/oatmeal mix
- Corn starch or nonstick cooking spray
- Prepare the yeast: heat up the water (about 120F – as hot as you can touch) and mix with the yeast until there are no lumps. Add 1 teaspoon of honey, mix, and let sit for a minute or two.
- Add the butter, milk, sugar, and salt to the yeast mixture. Mix gently until the color is consistent.
- Add two cups of flour/oatmeal mix and stir with a spoon. Add more flour/oatmeal until the dough is dry enough that it leaves a little bit of flour on the sides of the bowl.
- Put some flour between your hands and rub them over a clean area of the counter. This is for kneading.
- Knead the dough for 10 minutes. Squeeze it back and forth between your hands and mash it on the floured counter. Shape into a ball.
- Spray the inside of a bowl with nonstick cooking spray or dust with corn starch. Place the ball of dough inside, put a towel overtop, and keep in a warm place (near a lamp or on the warming area of a stove both work well) for about an hour. The dough should rise.
- Take the dough and punch/shape it into a rectangular, then roll it up – it should be about the size and shape of a bread pan. This is easily done in the same area that you did the kneading; you may even want to dust some more flour on the ball before you start shaping.
- Put the dough back in the bowl (or in a bread pan coated with cooking spray), cover with a towel again, and return to the warming area for another hour.
- Preheat the oven to 400F. Bake the roll in the bread pan or on a baking sheet sprayed with the cooking spray for 30 minutes. Remove from pan to cool.
This whole wheat oatmeal bread is delicious warm, straight from the oven, with a pat of butter. It also goes well with the apple dip I posted earlier. You can store the loaf in a Ziploc bag to preserve freshness. Be sure to put it in the fridge after a day or so – otherwise it will get moldy. Whole wheat bread goes moldy quickly because it has a lot of nutrients, which mold likes. Mold can tell the difference between homemade and processed, unlike people.
Be creative – you can use different flours and add flavors (cinnamon, raisins, dates, etc…) to fit the occasion.
Here is an excellent website for a kneading description: Kneading e-How.
Apples with Brussels Sprouts Recipe
- 1 package Brussels sprouts
- 1/2 white onion, thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons of olive oil
- 1 sliced apple
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup sparkling apple cider
- Slice the apple and add a dash of lemon juice to keep the color.
- Cut and quarter the Brussels sprouts. Steam until al dente.
- Saute the onions, then add the water and sparkling cider. Heat until about half the liquid has evaporated.
- Put sprouts in a serving bowl and add the onion sauce. Mix. Then add the apple and mix again.
- Serve! (Add salt and pepper to taste.)
This could be a side dish with dinner. Very light and very simple.
Yesterday I made blueberry “muffins” that tried to be healthy. They turned out more like blueberry pancakes, but they were delicious anyway. They were too liquidy, so next time I might cut the oil to thicken up the batter. Also, the blueberries were frozen so they were slightly watery. I’m not sure how to fix that – maybe rinse and dry them beforehand? That might solve the additional problem of the dough turning blue from watery berries.
- 1 cup plain, unsweetened Almond milk
- 2 egg whites
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil (replace with 2 tablespoons softened butter)
- 1 cup of flour
- 1 cup oatmeal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar (I like the granulated kind by Domino)
- 1 cup blueberries (use more or less depending on how much you like blueberries)
- Mix everything together, adding the blueberries last.
- Cook at 400F for…
- If you want just muffin tops, spoon then onto a greased baking sheet as though they were cookies and bake for 10-12 minutes. If you want real muffins, put them in muffin cups and bake for 20-25 minutes.
- Serve hot, with a pat of butter.