Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Selma's best oatmeal cookies {ala SM}...

The other day my son asked me why we don't always have a filled cookie jar like another family he visits frequently...guilt, gUiLt, full on GUILT came over me, and I knew I had to adjust my priorities.

to do list
fill cookie jar

First, I needed a cookie jar. I've collected many a covered dish in my day and thought this lovely white piece from China would do the trick, it was shallow and wide, so the cookies should rest in it comfortably.

As our cookie conversation continued, my son actually said that he would like to learn how to bake cookies (almost brought a tear to this domestisa's eyes). I asked him for more information on his idea of the perfect cookie and made a few recipe recommendations. 

When he made his choice, I could barely hide my smile as I ran to get the chocolate chips. It was the first recipe that I ever made on my own, Selma's Best Oatmeal cookies. The recipe is from one of my mother's favorite cookbooks, "The I hate to Cook Book" by Peg Bracken. I found a copy at an estate sale a few years back and was happy to be reunited with an old friend.

The recipe below is a modified version of the original, I use butter instead of shortening and chocolate chips in place of walnuts. Also, I have 8-10 minutes as the cook time instead of 10. I find most people like a cookie that is crispy~crunchy around the edges and soft and chewy in the center. From my experience, to get this texture, you need to pull the cookies out when they are just dry and maybe a little golden around the edge, but still look a doughy in the center.

Selma’s Best Oatmeal Cookies, ala Splendid Market
1 cup (2 sticks) salted, softened butter

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 beaten egg
1 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups quick rolled oats

3/4 cup chocolate chips

1 tsp. vanilla
              Preheat oven to 350 degrees (180 C).
              Cream together butter, sugar, brown sugar
              Create a bowl in the center of the creamed mixture, beat the egg and then blend the egg and vanilla into this mixture.
              In another bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add to creamed mixture.
              Add oats, chocolate chips.
              Next, Selma says to chill the dough for 1 hour, and put walnut sized pieces on a baking sheet. Then butter the bottom of a small glass and dip it in sugar, and flatten each cookie with the glass. I have had fine results just dropping spoonfuls of the dough onto a silpat covered baking sheet, and skipping the sugared glass step.

Bake for 8-10 minutes, checking the appearance of the cookies at 8 minutes. for a cookie with a crunchy outer edge and a chewy center pull the tray out
when the edges look just a little dry and the center of the cookie is puffed up and still soft and doughy. 

lift the cookies from the tray using a spatula and put them on a rack to cool.

A filled cookie jar is great to have, but let's face it, if those cookies aren't consumed in a day or two, they start to taste a little stale.

To help extend that fresh out of the oven experience, I borrowed a tip from my competitors in the bright yellow package in the refrigerator section.

I baked off a dozen cookies, then formed the remaining dough into a rectangle, on a piece of waxed paper, about 1 inch thick. I wrapped the waxed paper around the block, and then wrapped it all in plastic wrap.

Now, I can produce a plate of warm cookies and look like supermom {well, for a few minutes at least} just like that.

As Peg Said : "These bear the same relationship to the ordinary oatmeal cooky that the Rolls-Royce does to the Bicycle".

I hope you have the chance to try them.


Kellie @ Sasse Avenue said...

Hi Emily,

My biscuit jar is empty at this very moment but not for long. Those cookies look so delicious and easy to make.

Kel x

The enchanted home said...

First you had me laughing...oh yea I know all about "why don't we have this or that like so and so has, one of his friends has an enormous jar filled to the brim at all times with heaps of candy" I explained I don't want a lifetime of dental bills..lol!
But this is very sweet and might I say those cookies look INCREDIBLE. We are all big oatmeal cookie fans so you bet I am printing this out as we speak, and I will be giving them a whirl. They look and sound heavenly!

Barbara@HausDesign said...

YUM. And a great idea to freeze some for future needs (or cravings in my case)!!!

The enchanted home said...

Needed to come back to say I bought all the ingredients for these cookies and hope to make these bad boys later today or tomorrow, its raining cats and dogs over here perfect day to bake!!

Splendid Market said...

EH ~ that is great, I hope you enjoy them as much as I do {oh, I mean, your kids enjoy them as much as mine :)} I love the fragrance of cookies baking when it is raining out!!


yum!! I have such a sweet tooth I will so try this recipe and I especially like the way you portioned and froze the rest. THanks for your comment today--I think you will have to send me your recipe for homemade cream cheese--we go through buckets here! xxx

pretty pink tulips said...

Well good minds think alike. My 9 year old son helped me make oatmeal chocolate chip cookies on Sunday and we just finished off the leftover frozen dough today! I've never thought to freeze them in a rectangle like that....will give that a try, as well as your version!

Thank you also for your kind words on the blog today. I truly appreciate it!!

xo Elizabeth

red ticking said...

so cute.. and we could use a few of those at the ticking! (amd i am so not joking!) he he

Splendid Market said...

Pam ~ just checked the jar and it is empty again! I'll bake some up.

Just to clarify, I put the portioned brick into the refrigerator. I bake off a dozen every other day. I would guess the dough is fine for a week in the refrigerator.

I hope you like them!!

The enchanted home said...


You should have included a disclosure message, saying these are highly addicting and can make you want to devour the entire batch. I made them, they were DECLICIOUS but I didnt know when to stop...so good that I passed the recipe on.

Lee Brillhart said...

Great cookies, Emily! Freezing dough a great idea because I'd feel compelled to eat them all "to prevent them from going stale" if I baked them all at once. Thanks.