Thursday, October 22, 2015

Enjoy Coconut Oatmeal Butterscotch Chewies with 3 Book Recommends

Recipe adapted from December 2014
Cook's Ingredient Insight
Use old fashioned rolled oats (not instant) in this recipe. Instant oats are pressed thin, which help them cook faster, but they dissolve when baked in cookies. Old fashioned oats aren't as fine as the instant variety. In a pinch when your pantry only has instant by all means use them. This dough can be made ahead, wrapped tightly in plastic and into a zip loc bag and stored in freezer up to a month. A #40 cookie scoop makes quick work of portioning dough. 
Be sure to chill dough before using. Toasting coconut ahead adds to the cookie flavor.
Recipe makes 3 dozen cookies.
Coconut Oatmeal Butterscotch Chewies 
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1-1/2 sticks of butter plus 4 TB margarine (total 16 TB.) softened
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2-1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup toasted coconut 
  • 2 cups butterscotch chips
  • optional: 3/4 cup toasted pecans
  • Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  • Cream butter/margarine, brown sugar, granulated sugar in a large bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy about 5 minutes. 
  • Add eggs and vanilla to creamed mixture and beat on low speed until ingredients are well blended.  Add half the flour beat on low speed until ingredients are combined. Add remaining flour, beating only until flour is incorporated. 
  • Fold in oats, toasted coconut, chips and pecans until evenly distributed. 
  • Chill dough at least one hour.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  • Since I did not have a #40 scoop I rolled mounds of dough about 2 inches and placed on cookie sheet. 
  • Bake cookies for 9-11 minutes until golden but still a little moist. Cool a few minutes on baking sheet and transfer to a wire rack to cool.  

Check out these creative cookies shaped like books.
What could be better than enjoying a fall afternoon with a plate of Coconut Oatmeal Butterscotch Chewies cookies, a cup of coffee and new book of poems. If poems aren't your thing here are some new 2015 book recommends for your fall reading list. 
Faith Sullivan is a Minnesota author whose newest book is "Good Night Mr. Wodehouse." The story celebrates the strength and resourcefulness of independent women, the importance of community, and the transformative power of reading. 
Readers are taken back to Harvester, Minnesota to catch up on characters introduced to us in "The Cape Ann," one of my all time favorite books by Sullivan. Nell Stillman is an indomitable heroine whose story is told with Sullivan’s characteristic wit and sly humor. Stillman does not have an easy life, but it is filled with purpose and friendship and the joy of reading. For Nell, reading is not just for enjoyment, but it is a lifesaver during her times of grief and loss. Even in her lowest moment, reading the novels of P.G. Wodehouse can bring a chuckle, and bring salvation. 
As reader, what books do you turn to that give you solace when you want to escape into a a world of reading?
Newbery Medalist Laura Amy Schlitz brings her delicious wit and keen eye to early twentieth-century America in a moving yet comedic tour de force. The book has earned a Kirkus Review and considered the #1 Bestsellar Teen and Young Adult 20th Century United States Historical Fiction.
Schlitz creates a wholly human character in Joan Skrags, a 14 year old girl in 1911 thirsting for the learning, culture and knowledge to which she had only brief exposure through her mother and an insightful teacher, but which is cut short by her harsh and intimidating father after her mother’s untimely death. As a “big, ugly ox of a girl”, she is condemned to a life of drudgery on a hard scrabble farm, unappreciated by her father and 3 brothers. It is a telling sign for Joan when her father burns her 3 romantic novels, Jane Eyre, Ivanhoe and Dombey and Son. Joan is finally motivated to flee her family and seek a new life.
She ends up in Baltimore at night, lost with no place to stay after fleeing a man who tried to take liberties with her. By lucky chance she is taken in by the Rosenbachs, a prosperous Jewish family, and the real story of Joan’s education and personal growth begins looking for work as a hired girl on a city far away from her family.
"Toad Weather" takes the premise of a rainy day, and a real event, and brings us an adventure that can happen on an ordinary day. Little Ally is bored on a rainy day, but her mom wants her to see something amazing. Grandmother is a little more reluctant to go traipsing around in the rain. Outside the city is transformed into glistening streets and the sound of raindrops on different objects. As they walk through the city another sound grows louder and they see a large crowd. This is what Mama wants to show them. What could it be?
Sandra Markle and illustrator Thomas Gonzalez have done a marvelous job conveying the magic of making a rainy day into something memorable. This children's picture book is aimed at kids from ages 4 to 8 and offers a salute to the spiritual practices of wonder and kindness in the city. It's a wonderful story of how a rainy/gloomy day can be fun. This teaches kids to look around. To open their eyes and ears and enjoy the moment.

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