As I mentioned in my earlier post on improvisational baking, it takes only a few tweaks to turn a classic recipe into something entirely new.
I started with my Better Than Grandma's Oatmeal Raisin Cookies as a source recipe and then did some brainstorming. "What flavors go with raisins?" I thought. And then it hit me: booze and chocolate. Rum raisin ice cream is pretty popular, and Raisinets (chocolate-coated raisins) are a common movie theater snack. What a no-brainer.
I wanted to keep the raisin-chocolate balance even, so I split the 1 1/2 cups of raisins from the source recipe in two and used 3/4 cup raisins and 3/4 cup chocolate chips. I then decided to soak the raisins in rum to infuse them with flavor and to enplumpen them. Next, I replaced a teaspoon of the milk in the wet ingredients with a teaspoon with rum.
I made just three small changes to the source recipe, and I've come up with a new cookie. It really was that simple. I just swapped out one ingredient for an equal amount of another.
Makes about 3 dozen cookies. (To see this recipe in process, check out Picturing Rum Raisinet Cookies.)
1 stick butter
1 cup + 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
|3/4 cup raisins soaked in 3/4 cup rum, drained|
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon rum
1/2 teaspoon milk
2 cups oatmeal|
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
- Soak the raisins in 3/4 cup rum to plump for 30-45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- In your Kitchen Aid or a large mixing bowl, cream together the creamables.
- In a small bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Whisk together until smooth.
- Add the combined wet ingredients to the creamables. Mix together until well incorporated.
- Strain the raisins, discarding the remaining rum. Add the plumped raisins to the combined wet ingredients and creamables. Mix together until well incorporated.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients. Using a spatula, fold together until evenly distributed.
- Slowly add the dry ingredients to the combined creamables and wet ingredients. Mix until evenly combined.
- Shape dough into balls--about 2 tablespoons each.
- Place the dough balls about 2 inches apart on Silpat- or parchment paper-lined cookie sheets.
- Bake at 350º for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the cookie sheets from the oven and let stand for 2 minutes. Then place cookies on wire racks to cool.