Thursday, June 23, 2011

David Lebovitz's Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
 - what could be more basic than that? But David Lebovitz raved about Joanne Chang's recipe, so I just had to try it. Plus, I had a surplus of oats that no one else would eat.

After baking a batch, I was in heaven! He is right. Who cares about "fussy showstoppers" when this delicious thing is what we want to eat?

Here's the recipe with my own notes in green. These cookies are so good, I have been having trouble blogging them. Because every time I sit down and look at this recipe, I'm off to the kitchen again, baking a new batch instead of writing. Yes, I have a batch of batter chilling in the fridge as we speak now.

OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES (Makes About 24 cookies)
Adapted from "Flour" by Joanne Chang

Be sure to really beat the butter and sugar together in the stand mixer. (If you don’t have a mixer, Joanne says you can beat it by hand for ten minutes instead.) And feel free to swap out the raisins for any other dried fruit - cranberries, sour cherries, diced apricots, etc.

1 cup (225 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2/3 cup (150 g) granulated sugar

1 cup (200 g) packed light brown sugar -- I shaved off as much as 150g and it was still very sweet! 
2 large eggs, at room temperature

1 3/4 cup (245 g) flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (I omitted, not a fan)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
 (I didn't have this, so I tried some allspice powder)
1 3/4 cup (175 g) old–fashioned rolled oats (not instant or quick-cooking)
1 1/2 cups (240 g) raisins (if you like "boozy raisins", poach them in a bit of wine/rum first)

1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugars until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
2. Meanwhile in a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon, making sure there are no lumps of baking soda. Stir in the oats and raisins.
3. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until thoroughly combined. On low speed, or by hand, gradually add the flour and oat mixture to the creamed butter, mixing until completely incorporated.
4. Chill the batter a few hours or overnight, covered. (This step is optional, although recommended by the author.) Absolutely DO NOT skip this step. I did once and my cookies failed. For me, I put the entire metal mixer bowl into the freezing compartment for an hour and it's more than enough. 
5. To bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
6. Drop the dough in 1/4 cup (50 g) balls evenly spaced on the baking sheet and flatten the tops slightly with your hand. (I got about 8 cookies per baking sheet.) You can make smaller cookies too. They turn out just fine (well, if crispy is fine).
7. Midway during baking, rotate the baking sheet and tap the tops of the cookies down somewhat firmly with a spatula to flatten the domes. I skipped this step, as my oven doesn't require me to rotate stuff halfway. But then I did make smaller cookies, so tapping them was not necessary.
8. Bake the cookies for 20 to 22 minutes, until they just start to turn brown across the top, but do not overbake.
Remove from oven and cool completely.

Storage: Once cool, the cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days. The dough can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week, or frozen for up to two months.


  1. So you used only 50g of sugar? so step 4 is kinda like really important even though its optional?

  2. No, please note that there are two kinds of sugar used here - 150g granulated sugar and 200g light brown sugar, making a total of 350g. For me, 200g (of any combination) was good enough. I didn't dare make it with 350g sugar. Might be even more heavenly, who knows. But I tend to prefer less sweet treats.

  3. And yes, step no.4 is important...maybe because our room temperature is much higher. The cookies will tend to spread and burn, if not pre-chilled.

  4. I love raisin + oatmeal cookies... and if you say this is good, it's bound to be scrumptious! Just wonder if one can substitute dried cranberry bits for raisins to switch things up a bit? :D

  5. hi catherine! May I know if you used all-purpose flour for this recipe?

  6. The cookies look like they are to die for :-) Love the photo!

  7. Kenny: Yes, you can add/switch any dried fruit you like! The recipe is very flexible and forgiving! Next time you come to Singapore, I bake some with cranberries for you!

    Peishi: Yes, all purpose flour. I also tried with self-raising flour replacing the flour and baking soda. Works just as well.

    Julian: Thanks! :)

  8. Hi, thanks for sharing the recipe! You are so right! The cookies were absolutely scrumptious and my family loves it, including myself who is not really a cookie lover.

  9. Hi since you made them smaller, did you reduce the baking time?

  10. Yes, actually the smaller cookies will be done in less than 20 minutes time, but that may also depend from oven to oven.

  11. Hey Catherine, your David Lebovitz's Cookie is a Recipe Guessing Game on Knapkins. Think your friends can win?

    Show your foodie love and vote here


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