It has finally arrived! The day of the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap post. I have to admit I was absolutely a wreck about this event. I signed up for it within seconds of hearing about it, and mere nanoseconds before several of my friends told me I should. I was totally stoked on the idea. And then fifteen minutes later, I had a minor panic attack. “Sweet lord, I have to bake for other people and mail them my cookies and then they are going to eat them! Eat my cookies, that I made! And I’ve never met them, they don’t know me, or my sarcasm or my incredibly dark sense of humor and I’m going to end up making them garbage cookies and no one is going to like me.”
I think I passed out then. I’m not sure what happened. I sent a barrage of frantic emails and Gchat messages to the amazing Emily who was the epitome of cool over this (I mean how could she not be? She won 1st place in a pie contest, the girl has skillz). She didn’t even test her recipe before sending out her cookies. I wish I had her confidence. I tested my recipe no less than 4 times, and I still tweaked the last batch before I sent them out.
I knew the recipe I wanted to make the minute I stumbled across it in last month’s Bon Appetit magazine. It was one of those moments where you’re like, “Damn why didn’t I think of that?” and “Oh, but I know how to make it so much better.” Now, I’m not certain mine were “so much better” than the original, but they were chewier and I loved the hint of cinnamon. But the process of testing all these cookies, oh good lord.
I made a batch following the recipe almost exactly (and by almost I mean I was at the BFs apartment estimating tablespoons for a half-recipe using a normal spoon from his kitchen drawer). They tasted like sort of amped up peanut butter cookies. I instantly knew I wanted to add honey and cinnamon to them. So I tested the recipe again and what do you know? I made a nutrigrain bar in cookie form. Ugh. They weren’t bad but they tasted too damn healthy and that is not what I was going for. Even The BF gave me a look.
So I tweaked some more, and then some more, and then just a little bit more and I thought I had it perfected. Which was good, because by this point I was totally and utterly sick of these damn cookies. And then I spent the Sunday before the due date to mail them baking frantically and I burnt the ENTIRE batch of cookies. Like every single one of the three dozen (all baked separately) was burnt.
I gave my oven a withering look like it had just betrayed me. I had worked all day Saturday and carved out just enough time to bake my cookies on Sunday, wrap them, go for a run and then head over to The BF’s to get my crochet on (don’t ask). And now, I had to make another three dozen cookies and try again. I was furious.
I ran off my excess anger prepped a second batch, again slightly altered, called my mom and told her to expect a batch of burnt cookies in the mail sometime that week. The second batch came out much nicer, no burns and I packed them up and labeled them and wrote some nice cards (sadly not Christmas themed) and then realize I forgot to take pictures.
I mean, I had only been stressing about this cookie swap for a solid month, how could I forget to take pictures? So I unpacked my mother’s batch of burnt cookies and photographed them. I apologize now for the rather unappetizing photos of burnt cookies. I swear to you I will make it up this week with a beautiful batch of cookies that will Food Destroy (a term I stole from Spoon Fork Bacon, you can read about it here) any cookie swap you go to.
All the stress and mishaps aside though, these are a great twist on a classic peanut butter cookie. They’re soft and chewy, with a different depth of flavor you don’t always get. The BF liked them and my mom even liked the burnt batch, and my sister did too, so that’s pretty awesome. They’re not the prettiest looking cookies out there, but they taste awesome and they’re super easy to throw together, so if you’re in a rush or don’t have awesome piping skillz these are pretty good and you can bet no one else with be brining them, which is always a win.
Cinnamon Pecan-Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies (C-PPBOC, or C-Peabcock Cookies)
Adapted from Bon Appetit
1/3 cup smooth peanut butter
1/3 cup + 2 tbsp pecans, toasted, cooled
2 tbsp honey
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
pinch of allspice
¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
1 large egg
¾ cup old-fashioned oats
Pre-heat oven to 350°F, line baking sheets with parchment paper or a slipat.
Toast your pecans for about 10 minutes or until fragrant. Let cool. In the bowl of a food processor combine the peanut butter, pecans and honey until relatively smooth (my pecans were finally chopped). Set aside.
In a separate bowl add the flour, baking soda, salt and spice, and whisk to combine. Meanwhile cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy in a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or in a separate bowl with an electric mixer. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until thoroughly incorporated. Add the pecan-peanut butter mix and mix until fluffy. Slowly add the flour and mix until just incorporated. Add the oats on low.
Scoop heaping tablespoons onto the parchment line baking sheets and bake for 8-12 minutes, or just until golden on top.
Can be kept in a brown paper bag for four days at room temperature.
I wanted to say thanks to all the bloggers that I got delicious cookies from. Liz from Southern Charm sent some awesome Gingerbread Latte Cookies.
Erin over at Currently Coveting sent some deadly Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Cookies (these are totes on my list of next to bake).
And last but not least Kristen from Kristen’s Healthy Balance sent some Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies.
A huge thank you also has to go to Julie at The Little Kitchen and Lindsay at Love & Olive Oil for putting this whole thing together. I can’t even imagine all the work that went on behind the scenes. They’re currently putting together a post with links to all the blogs/recipes that were in the cookie swap (which is a staggering amount, and it’s worldwide!) and I’ll be sure to post it when I get it. If you want to sign up for this next year, here’s the link.