Damn, I Wish I Read the Recipe…

What’s the definition of insanity?  Continue to make the same mistake but expect a different outcome?  Uh, yeah.  That’s my baking downfall.
This week I found two recipes that looked crazy good and once again went into this morning a touch too confidently.  Why, oh why do I do this over and over again?
I made my hot lemon water, turned on Eddie Vedder radio, prepped my work space and then promptly realized that today’s baking experiment would be an all day project.
Do you think I’d learn my lesson from past mistakes? Yes.  But do I ever?  No.
To make a long story short…
  • The cookie dough needs to be chilled for 4 hours.
  • The bars need to cool to room temperature and then chill for another 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

Hours later, I finally pulled the last batch of cookies from the oven.

Now, y’all know I have an obsession with chocolate but the bars were a bit too much for me.  I loved the saltiness of them, but they’re ridiculously rich. (However my brother and his son stopped by as I was cutting the bars and they each ate two or three.  They couldn’t get enough but required large glasses of milk as side kicks for the sweetness.)

The cookies were amazing!  Such an interesting recipe, with unexpected ingredients creating delectable treats!

Better Than DoubleTree Chocolate Chip Cookies (recipe care of crazyforcrust.com)
Better than Double Tree Cookies.jpg
INGREDIENTS:  1/2 cup old fashioned oats, 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 cup unsalted butter (melted), 3/4 cup brown sugar (packed), 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice, 2 large eggs, 3 cups chocolate chips (use your favorite kind), 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts

DIRECTIONS:  Place oats in a small food processor or blender and grind until they turn powdery. Place them in a medium sized bowl and whisk in the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. Stir together melted butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until smooth. (No mixer needed – just use a wooden spoon or spatula!) Stir in vanilla, lemon juice, and eggs. Stir until smooth, then stir in flour mixture. Mixture may be slightly lumpy because of the ground oats. Stir in chocolate chips and walnuts. Line a cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Scoop 1/4 cupfuls of the dough into balls and place on the cookie sheet. You do not need to space them; this is just for chilling. Cover well with plastic wrap and chill at least 4 hours or overnight before baking. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place cookies well spaced on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Slightly depress each ball with the palm of your hand. Bake for 13-17 minutes. Do not over bake – these are best a bit under done.

 

Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars (recipe care of browneyedbaker.com)

Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars.jpg

INGREDIENTS:  2 1/8 cups (301 grams) all-purpose flour, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt, 12 tablespoons (170 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature, 1 cup (198 grams) light brown sugar, ½ cup (99 grams) granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 2 cups (340 grams) semisweet chocolate chips, 10 ounces caramel candy squares, unwrapped, 3 tablespoons heavy cream, Fleur de sel (or other sea salt) for sprinkling over caramel and bars

DIRECTIONS:  Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch square pan and line with parchment paper; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside. Using an electric mixer, mix together the melted butter and sugars on medium speed until combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and mix until smooth. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix on low, just until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips. In a medium microwave-safe bowl, combine the caramels and heavy cream. Microwave on high until the caramels are melted, stirring every 20 seconds. This will take about 2 minutes. Press half of the cookie dough into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Pour the hot caramel over the dough cookie dough and spread into an even layer, leaving about ½ inch around the border. Sprinkle the caramel with sea salt. Drop the remaining cookie dough in spoonfuls over the caramel and gently spread the dough with a spatula until the caramel is covered. Sprinkle the bars with additional sea salt. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the top of the bars are light golden brown and the edges start to pull away from the pan. Place the pan on a wire rack and cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for about 30 minutes to allow the caramel layer to set. Cut into squares and serve. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.

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