A couple of weeks ago, Becky said "I'd like some oatmeal raisin cookies". And seeing as I can't feed Sam directly, I do my best to oblige her requests. Of course, I looked for a Cook's Illustrated recipe first. And I found this online, which purported to be the Cook's Illustrated recipe from 1997. (I'm not actually going to pay to get through their paywall, am I?) The cookies were good, but there were a few problems. Not enough salt. Baking two trays at once led to severely uneven cooking. And the flavor just didn't have enough punch.
Then I thought...what if I use the methods from their fantastic chocolate chip cookie recipe (adapted here). The goal there was to make big, chewy, flavorful cookies. Isn't that what we want in an oatmeal raisin cookie? I think it is! So I put the two recipes together, made a few fixes, and here we are. (The coarse kosher salt gives a nice complexity to the cookies.) Becky agrees I can call these the Ultimate Oatmeal Raisin Cookies*.
Ultimate Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Makes 18 Cookies
16 Tbs (1 cup) butter
3/4 cup (5.5 oz) granulated sugar
1 cup (7.0 oz) light brown sugar [updated]
1 1/2 cup (7.5 oz) all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp coarse kosher salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3 cup (8 oz) rolled oats
1 1/2 cup raisins*
Preheat oven to 350. Whisk flour, baking powder, kosher salt, and nutmeg together. Heat 12 Tbs butter in a wide saute pan until melted (a couple of minutes), and continue to cook until brown (a few more minutes). Remove from heat, and add to remaining 4 Tbs butter in a big mixing bowl to melt. Whisk sugars and butter in mixing bowl. Add eggs and whisk until sugar lumps are gone, about 30 seconds. Let stand 3 minutes, and whisk again for 30 seconds. Repeat stand/whisk process 2 more times. (This ensures that the sugar is fully dissolved and the cookies will develop a richer caramelized flavor.) Using spatula, stir in flour mixture until incorporated (but try not to over-mix). Stir in oats until incorporated, and finally stir in raisins.
Split dough into 18 big cookies. Put 9 on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and bake 22-25 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through. For most consistent results, bake only 1 batch at a time. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool, and leave for at least 30 minutes to set.
*I like raisiny cookies, but apparently Becky thinks that 1 1/2 cups of raisins is too many. Becky is CRAZY. (However, Becky strongly recommends using golden raisins in the recipe, which sweetens things up just a tad.)