Friday, March 24, 2017

Toffee Cowboy Cookies

It’s been a busy baking week for me! On Monday, we celebrated this month’s birthdays, so I made a cake for that. Wednesday at work we celebrated the upcoming arrival of a new baby. It’s also the end of the academic quarter, which means there are a lot of little things to finish up. When looking for this week’s cookies, I didn’t want anything too complex. I came across these cookies, a variation of the cowboy cookie, and they sounded so yummy.

I grew up calling this type of cookie, basically a chocolate chip cookie with coconut and crispy rice cereal or corn flakes, a ranger cookie. Perhaps it’s regional, I’m not sure. It’s one of my favorite types of cookies, the crunch of the coconut and cereal adds so much. This recipe has a couple of additions: honey roasted pecans, toffee bits, and two types of chocolate chips. I’m sure you could mix up the types of chips you use; don’t make a special trip to the store to get specific types of chips. Don’t skip the toffee chips though!

I read through the recipe, which mentioned that this makes a lot of cookies and thought, Nah, I’ll be fine. This recipe makes about 5 dozen cookies, and I made my cookies larger than I normally do. When you think it has six cups of mix-ins, that tells you a lot! I usually have no problem mixing with my artisan KitchenAid, but I had to do the last of the mixing by hand. The original recipe mentioned saving some of the pecans and chips to sprinkle on top of the partially baked cookies. I did that with one batch, but it was a bit of a pan so I didn’t do that with the rest of the dough. These don’t look quite done when you take them out of the oven, but trust me, they’ll be ok. These have so many flavors, sugary sweet with some crunch. Homey but addictive!

Toffee Cowboy Cookies
1 cup chopped pecans
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
⅛ teaspoon salt
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¾ teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
¾ cup sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup mini chocolate chips
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup toffee bits
1 cup crispy rice cereal

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking pans with silicone baking mats.

Line an additional baking sheet with foil. Spread the chopped pecans on the foil and drizzle with the olive oil and honey. Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 3 minutes, stir, and then bake for 6 more minutes until toasted. Allow to cool slightly.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter, brown sugar, and sugar on medium until light, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the vanilla and stir to combine.

Add the flour mixture and stir on low until partially incorporated. Add the oats, milk and mini chocolate chips, coconut, toffee bits, crispy rice cereal, and cooled chopped pecans. Stir on low. Depending on the size of your mixer, you may need to do the last bit of mixing by hand.

Scoop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, using about 1-1/2 t0 2 tablespoons of dough for each cookie. Bake for about 10 minutes, until browned along the edges. The centers of the cookies will be soft, but will set as the cookies cool. Cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

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