Marma-Failed Oatmeal Cookies

This was the second time that I made these cookies but this time didn’t go as smoothly as the first.  So what this tells me…I should have documented the first batch for this blog!  Oh well, I didn’t.  I’m not perfect.  I still served the cookies at a party and people still ate them.  So what this tells me…don’t judge a cookie by its crumbled mess appearance.

I had a bunch of oatmeal that I wasn’t eating, so I decided to look for an oatmeal cookie recipe.  I originally wanted a recipe that would hold up like a thumbprint cookie so that I could put the Orange marmalade jam in the middle.  It didn’t quite work this way but they tasted good, so I consider it sort of successful?  But it was a bit of a Marma-failed oatmeal cookie batch.

I ended up adapting a Pinterest recipe for Apple Oatmeal Cookies but I didn’t add apples.  I’m sure it would be great if I followed exactly.

Ingredients

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

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1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

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1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 and 3/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

1 medium apple (peeled, cored, and chopped into small pieces). I didn’t use this.  Instead I used orange marmalade to top the cookies like a glaze.

Instructions from the livewell bake often recipe:

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
Using a handheld mixer or stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until smooth. Add in the egg and vanilla, making sure to mix well after each ingredient.
Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Mix in the oats, then the chopped apple until fully combined. (I left the apple out)

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Cover and refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes.  I had the dough in the fridge for a couple of hours but for my warm house, I learned that it was better to freeze the dough.  My second batch was baked with frozen dough and they came off the cookie sheet without difficulty.

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or a silipat mat.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and scoop two tablespoon sized pieces of dough onto the prepared baking sheets.

I cut slices and cut the dough in half to place on cookie sheets.  I added marmalade like a glaze on top.  This made a yummy topping.

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Those cookies really melted onto the sheet so next I tried balls, then made an indent for the marmalade to have a well.  That still all melted too much into the cookie sheet.

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Baked at 350 for 12-14 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to finish.  Easier said than done.  In any case, these cookies tasted great and I still put them out for everyone to munch on.  There wasn’t any left, so nobody minded that the weren’t perfect.  So even if they failed to look pretty, they weren’t a complete failure cause they were very edible!  Just make sure your dough is very cold, if not frozen when you go to bake.

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Heat Wave Cooking

I don’t mean that I have some fancy schmancy “Heat Wave” or confectioner’s oven or anything.  I am referring to the unbearable heat that Southern California has been experiencing this Summer and into now October!  We’ve had record highs and unusual humid days like the South.  I can’t begin to know for sure how prayers work, but my affinity for the South might have been heard a bit too loudly?!

So in the middle of this heat, I was asked to co-host a baby shower for a dear friend. Three others and myself split up duties of décor, food, games, etc. We managed to plan the entire party via text, which was a first for all of us. Some days, you came back to your phone with 20 messages, but you got the gist of the conversation and knew it was all coming together.  I can’t take credit for anything but the crust-less quiches and having talented friends!  Thanks to my co-hosts Amy, Nancy and Sharon!

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After some discussion, we decided on brunch menu items and I offered to make crust-less quiches. I asked my pal, Debi to help me. She often is the Ethel to my Lucy antics. (Although she has red hair, so we should really think of her as the Lucy!)

On a 100 degree night in Pasadena, we sweat and cooked up the party food in my small bungalow with a window air conditioning unit in the living room. I should add that Debi doesn’t even like eggs. I am really lucky to have friends like Debi in my life. She’s proven it on more than one occasion!

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I decided to make four different quiche-ish dishes. 1. Carmelized onions, prosciutto, gruyere cheese 2. Veggies 3. Spinach, tomatoes, and 4. Meat lovers

Each crust-less quiche is made essentially the same, we used about 8 to 12 eggs depending on the size of the dish that we were baking it in. We whipped eggs with some milk to lighten the eggs and to make sure they were fluffy and well mixed.

IMG_2210We prepped the ingredients for each dish first by roasting the veggies, cooking the sausages and bacon. Nothing like frying up some bacon when your kitchen feels like 400 degrees.

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Oven was set at about 375 degrees. To be honest, we probably didn’t even need to put the food in the oven. It probably would have cooked just fine in the kitchen air.

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You can layer any ingredient of your liking in these quiches. I prefer to roast or cook the ingredients first. The flavor tends to come out more and not just get lost in the eggs plus it’s a good idea to make sure any meat is fully cooked before you bake the quiche.  We also prepped and chopped bite size ingredient pieces so that lady party goers wouldn’t have a long piece of spinach to chew or chomp on a giant piece of eggplant.

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They bake about 15 to 20 mins depending on the size and the amount of layered ingredients. I always stick a fork or a skewer in the middle to make sure they come out clean.  Notice my special cooling racks…we had chairs and stools all over the place to hold dishes cause I don’t have adequate counter space in my 1920’s bungalow kitchen.

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We baked these the night before the party and they definitely would have been better fresh right out of the oven and not re-heated. Nobody seemed to complain though, so let’s just call this a win especially for having not lost a friend in the process or spontaneously combusting from our own body heat.

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Now!  Somebody else have a baby, get married or celebrate something special!  I’ve cooled off and I’m ready to get planning and cooking!

 

Pie for Breakfast!

Breakfast Pie is a hit with most people, so I thought I’d start with a crowd favorite. I found this recipe on pinterest so I can’t say it’s my original thought but I can tell you what works with it. Eggs, cheese, hash browns, green onions – totally works. Bacon – absolutely works!

You will probably hear of me talk about trips with friends often and especially our jaunts to Palm Springs, CA. At least once a year, we rent a house with a pool and hang out there for about 4 days. We do nothing. It’s glorious. I usually plan the food and I luckily have friends that help! This past Memorial Day 2015, I introduced Breakfast Pie to the gang and everyone seemed to give the nod of approval for this recipe.
I adapted my general recipe from the “pinterested” recipe from tablespoon.com
4 large eggs
2 cups of milk
2 cups of potatoes (frozen hash browns, any brand)
frozen pie crust (any brand)
salt, pepper and green onions to taste

You can follow the directions on the pie crust, but you’ll most likely set the oven to about 350, poke the crust a few times with a fork and brown it in the oven for about 10 mins.

In the meantime, combine all of the other ingredients. You don’t have to brown your hash browns before. I didn’t, however next time I make it I might try that for extra flavoring and for color. Once the pie crust is out of the oven and you have ingredients combined, pour them into the pie crust and bake at 350 for about 35 mins. Watch that the egg mixture is solid. You can jiggle it a bit to see if it shifts too much or not or you can also slide a knife of fork in the middle to see if it comes out clean.

Once this basic quiche is cooked, remove it from the oven and set the temp up to 425. While you’re waiting for the oven to heat further, weave bacon on the top in a lattice design. If this is too complicated, nobody is going to argue with you just putting strips across the top! Put the whole pie back in the oven to brown your cook your bacon, probably another 10 to 15 mins will do it.

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You’re supposed to let it sit for about 5 mins, but I’m almost certain that we didn’t follow that direction. I wasn’t the best at cutting and serving this pie, but there were no complaints about that. It tastes great and is easy to prepare. You can even make them the night before. I would suggest making the pies up to the bacon lattice the night before. You can cover with bacon and bake 15 mins prior to serving in the morning.

I’m sure you could also change up the ingredients to other items to vary flavors such as mushrooms, spinach or a southwestern style. I hope you try it and let me know how it works for you.