It’s just a Saturday thing. I call it my “crunch” day. It’s the day with the fewest free hours and the most projects. I do this to myself. I know I do. And I seem to be unstoppable. It’s a problem. Really. But I do get a lot done! And I rejoice in that!
See, I work Friday nights. I don’t get home until 1 AM and rarely will you find me asleep before 2:00. But then I’m up by 8:00 for a little coffee pow-wow with my curly-haired lover-boy. Then, a trip to the farmer’s market, hoping to get there early for a good parking spot. A trunk-full of restaurant-bound produce later, and totally inspired by the bounty, I plan the next three hours. And somehow I manage to pack more into those three hours than I can normally do in a full day. Really, I’m not sure how it happens. But as I drive across the Bay Bridge, reflecting on my morning, I find myself wondering how I possibly managed to weed the vegetable patch, bake cookies, scrub the bathroom, wash dishes, vacuum, and take a 30 minute nap in only three hours. (The nap is key!)…
And then it hits me. I’m almost at work, then sun has warmed and lulled me and I realize that, despite the 30 minute nap, I’m really tired. And I’m about to stand in a hot, high-energy kitchen for nine hours making snap decisions and trying to remember lessons I learned in Psych 101 to get seven different people to produce what I need. And I know that the night will be long. But there’s a reward, you see. (Well, many actually.) Because I was smart enough to make cookies!! And, “no there aren’t any nuts”, and, “yes, there are enough for the bussers too”, and, “WHO LEFT THE SLICER RUNNING?!!”, and, “what? Oh, well, I’m glad you like them!”
And so it goes. My Saturday. My Day of Lunacy. And tomorrow’s Sunday, which will probably be about the same, except that we seem to have run out of cookies…
Crisp and Salty Oatmeal Cookies adapted from Cook’s Illustrated
yields 24 cookies
- 1 cup (5 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 14 Tablespoons (7 ounces) unsalted butter slightly softened
- 1 cup (7 ounces) white sugar
- 1/4 cup (1-3/4 ounces) packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2-1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place the oven rack in the center postion. Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper, and set them aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt.
In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugars. Beat on low speed until combined, then turn to medium speed until it becomes light and fluffy (about 1 minute). Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat on medium-low speed until thoroughly combined.
Turn the mixer back down to low speed and add the flour mixture, mixing only until the flour is just incorporated. Then add the oats and mix until they are fully incorporated. Finish the last few stirs by hand.
Using a #30 cookie scoop or a 2-Tablespoon measure, scoop the dough into round balls and drop them on to the cookie sheet. Each cookie sheet should hold 8 cookies, with 3 cookies along the long sides of the pan, and 2 cookies in the center rows. Using your fingertips, gently flatten the balls of dough so that they are 3/4-inch tall. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt evenly over the tops of the cookies.
Bake one sheet at a time for 14-16 minutes. Remove from the oven when the cookies are golden brown with crisp edges and the centers yield to slight pressure when tested with your fingertip. Place the cookie sheet on a baking rack to cool, but leave the cookies on their baking sheet.
Enjoy your moment of peace and serenity.