The other evening, I found myself with the kids both in bed at 7.15 (Blue reading, but essentially settled off as far as I was concerned), and the Husband away. I got a bit of an odd 'at a loose end' feeling which is ridiculous as I have (always) at least 101 things to do. Instead of doing any of the current 101 things, I sloped off into the kitchen to seize those American measurements by the horns, give them a good shake down and see if I couldn't just make them work for me.
I have a set of American 'cups', and I also have a set of proper spoon measures, thanks to a baking set Pink received once, so there's no excuse really why I shouldn't be able to bake US style to my heart's content. So what's the problem? I hear you ask. Why have I been so reluctant?
Well, my friends, it all comes down to the butter. I buy my butter in 250g blocks. And my kitchen is cold. I usually have to leave my butter over a bowl of warm water for a few minutes to soften it up enough for the general rigors required of it in baking because 'room temperature' in my kitchen is not the same as in other peoples'. Why then, would I go to the extra hassle of softening it down enough to get it to fit into a cup and allow for accurate measuring, to then put into another bowl for mixing? Why?
|Hmm squares into rounds. Tricky.|
Anyway, I did it. The butter was a faff,
and I seemed to get quite a lot of
but otherwise it all worked out just dandy.
|and after all, chocolate tastes the same however you weigh it|
Based on an oatmeal and raisin cookie recipe that I found in The Cookiepedia (that I recently reviewed), I made these beauties, and I commend them to you. And I remembered to weigh out the ingredients once I'd filled the cups so that you can enjoy them too, either US or UK stylie.
White Chocolate & Sour Cherry Oaty Cookies
Makes around 15
1/2 cup (110g) unsalted butter at room temperature (or warmer than room temp if your kitchen is as cold as ours is)
2/3 cup (100g) caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 (110g) cup plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinammon
11/2 cups oats
1/3 cup (75g) white chocolate chunks
1/3 cup (75g) sour cherries
Pre-heat the oven to 350F (180C) and line 3-4 baking trays with greaseproof paper.
Beat together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy, then beat in the egg and vanilla.
Sift in the flour, baking powder, salt and cinammon with the mixer (I'm assuming you're using a mixer, sorry) running slowly, till it's all mixed in, then stir in the oats, chocolate and cherries.
Scoop out tablespoon sized amounts of mixture onto the lined baking trays, leaving about 2 inches between each blob. You might want to flatten each blob a little with a fork I decided to do it half way through cooking, which is a little haphazard, I'll admit.
Bake for 12-14 minutes (they will need slightly longer if, at the half way stage, you decide to get them out and flatten the dough slightly with a fork - so do it before hand) and resist the temptation to leave them in for too long.
They were pretty darn good, I must say, but I have a plea to American readers - I know there are some of you out there - and it is this. Please enlighten me. Does your butter come extra soft? Do you really cut it from a 'stick' and wodge it into cups to then scrape it into the mixer? Or have I completely misunderstood?