Monday, 3 February 2014

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I like a substantial cookie, especially a chocolate chip cookie.  When they’re made out of  only white flour I find them more like chocolate studded wallpaper paste, but super sweet and mushy.  These are made with whole wheat, old fashioned oats, jaggery, Xylitol and chocolate, dried cherries and walnuts.  They’re chewy, but luscious and sweet.

We needed something for the hour and a half long trip to the gondolas on Sulphur Mountain in Banff, Alberta.  Silly that as a local, I’d never been way up there before.  Most Calgarians haven’t.  We consider it a good spot for the tourists, of course. 

walnuts and dried cherries
Chop fairly roughly
1 cup soft butter (don’t go with less)
1 cup jaggery
½ cup Xylitol (sugar product made from Birch trees—less calories)
2 eggs
2 teaspoons top quality vanilla

1 ¼ cup whole wheat flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
3 cups old fashioned oats (not processed!)
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup dried cherries, chopped
1 cup chocolate chips  

Makes about four dozen.  Preheat oven to 325 F.  Takes about forty minutes from start to chewing.
Don’t even think of not using real butter.  This is where the taste and chewiness come from.  I used just under a full cup, and regretted that some cookies came out a bit more mounded than flat.  Flat is better, as they have more chew and flavour. 
Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
Mix last ingredients with a spoon.

Using a machine, whip the butter on high.  When it’s fluffy, add the jaggery and continue to whip.  When that’s well mixed in, add the Xylitol.  If you don’t have it, just add another half cup of jaggery.  If you don’t have jaggery, I’ll tell you to report to an Indian grocery store, but if you really can’t, settle for brown sugar.  Did you know brown sugar is nothing but white sugar coloured with molasses, here in North America?  Hmmmmm?

Add the eggs and vanilla and continue to beat.  At this point, my mix separated rather oddly, as jaggery can have that effect, but don’t worry. 

In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.  Turn off the mixer, and add this dry mix.  Turn the machine back onto low, and mix in.  Add the oats one cup at a time.  The dough will become quite stiff, so continue with a big wooden spoon.  Add the walnuts, cherries and chocolate chips. 
Sulphur Mountain Gondola
Sulphur Mountain Gondola

Drop spoonfuls of dough onto ungreased cookie sheets.  The dough may be crumbly, so press together into lumps if you must.  I tried forming some balls, but they took too long to cook, and didn’t flatten out well. 
Bake at 325F for twelve minutes.  Let rest on cookie sheet at least five minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool. 

These came in very handy on the drive up to Banff, and even more handy after we’d left the Hot Springs.  Why oh why don’t we go up there more often?

Kiddies had a good time in the observation lounge at the top!

For a little bit of Banff, with an Indian flare, check out one of many Indian films set high up in our precious jewel.

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
You won't be able to eat just one...

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