And Breathe: Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies with Dried Cranberries and Nuts

Hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving! I'll recap mine later- got to see fam and some friends which is always a positive. I know I have not been very attentive to my blog as of late- life's been crazy. For those of you in the same boat... take it day by day and put one shaky foot in front of the other. The light inside will come through. Everyone goes through hard times- chin up! Know how you feel and send hugs, I genuinely do. Have someone bake you these cookies! They are delish and will warm your tummy! Take a peek...

Okay- I got lazy on chopping the chocolate. My advice to you is not to be so lazy; it only hurts the consistency of the cookie. You try to pick it up but the crater of chocolate in the middle makes things fall apart. Oh it's still yummy! Just a mess. Lesson learned.

The recommended nuts are pralines, skinned hazelnuts, or walnuts paired with dried cherries or cranberries. I went with what was available: some pralines and a few hazelnuts with cranberries.

Note: Quick oats used in place of the old-fashioned oats will yield a cookie with slightly less chewiness. If you want the nuts to keep a stronger flavor- bake them at 350 for a little bit instead of heating them on the stove.

Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookies with Dried Cranberries and Nuts
America's Test Kitchen

1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (6 1/4 ounces)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 1/4 cups rolled oats , old-fashioned, (3 1/2 ounces)
1 cup toasted pecans (4 ounces), chopped
1 cup dried tart cranberries (5 ounces), chopped coarse
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate , chopped into chunks (about 3/4 cup)
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened but still cool
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar (10 1/2 ounces), preferably dark
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions; heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 large (18 by 12-inch) baking sheets with parchment paper.

Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium bowl. In second medium bowl, stir together oats, toasted pecans, chopped cherries, and chocolate.

In standing mixer fitted with flat beater, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until no sugar lumps remain, about 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl with rubber spatula; add egg and vanilla and beat on medium-low speed until fully incorporated, about 30 seconds. Scrape down bowl; with mixer running at low speed, add flour mixture; mix until just combined, about 30 seconds. With mixer still running on low, gradually add oat/nut mixture; mix until just incorporated. Give dough final stir with rubber spatula to ensure that no flour pockets remain and ingredients are evenly distributed.

Divide dough evenly into 16 portions, each about 1/4 cup, then roll between palms into balls about 2 inches in diameter; stagger 8 balls on each baking sheet, spacing them about 2 1/2 inches apart. Using hands, gently press each dough ball to 1 inch thickness.

Bake both baking sheets 12 minutes, rotate them front to back and top to bottom, then continue to bake until cookies are medium brown and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft (cookies will seem underdone and will appear raw, wet, and shiny in cracks), 8 to 10 minutes longer.

Do not over bake.

Cool cookies on baking sheets on wire rack 5 minutes; using wide metal spatula, transfer cookies to wire rack and cool to room temperature.