oatmeal coconut sunflower seed cookies (a recipe)

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I think I heard my husband describe life with a baby/toddler the best the other night when he told our friends: “With a kid, you just gotta have a routine.”  And before she was born, neither of us really had a real routine.  One benefit I’ve discovered from having routines in place is the predictability of pockets of time when I could be doing ____ while she does _____.  Our morning routine generally includes a small block of time where she watches an episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.  And on this particular Sunday morning, that was enough time for me to whip up the batter for these cookies.  

I found the recipe on the Whole Foods website after I did a search online for cookie recipes that use sunflower seeds.  It’s one of those super easy recipes to throw together in one bowl and I especially liked not having to bring out the big mixer.  I nuked the butter in the microwave for 30 seconds and it made it soft enough to smoosh but not melted (sacrilege to microwave butter, I know!  Believe me, it is okay to do with this recipe!).

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The recipe says it yields about 2 dozen but I managed to get 3 after using a small ice cream scoop to portion out each cookie.  I also changed it up a bit as I made each dozen: after I put a dozen of them on the baking sheet as is based on the recipe, I added 1/2 a cup of raisins and then put a dozen of those on another tray.  Then I added 1/2 a cup of Taza chocolate covered nibs and formed the last dozen on another tray.

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And since I used an ice cream scoop I noticed that they are pretty domed compared to the photos on their website.  They still managed to bake through all the way in this shape and are nice and chewy soft inside.  I baked them for 13 minutes but you know your oven better than I do, and you can use the color of the cookies to help determine when they’re crisp enough on the outside.  You could also press them down a little bit if you want flatter cookies.

One thing that was new to me was the use of whole wheat pastry flour.  Luckily I asked about it on Facebook and some friends told me that I could buy it in the loose grains section of Whole Foods vs. buying a whole big bag of it.  The cookies have so much texture because of the oatmeal, coconut flakes, and sunflower seeds as it is so I don’t know if the wheat flour added any texture too.  I would think that it’s healthier to use the whole wheat flour so if that’s the only benefit to it being in the recipe that’s cool with me and I’ll continue to make the cookies with it because they sure are pretty darn good.  And as you can see, they are toddler approved by my little taste tester who came scurrying into the kitchen after Daniel Tiger was over to see what I was doing with my “free time”.  Enjoy!  🙂

Ingredients:

– 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
– 1/2 cup sugar
– 1 egg
– 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
– 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
– 1/2 cup grated unsweetened coconut
– 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
– 1 1/4 cup rolled oats, either quick-cooking or regular (quick cooking will make a finer cookie)
– 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
– 3/4 teaspoon baking powder

Directions:

(This is what I did … the actual recipe tells you to bring out your mixer)

1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

2.  Put the stick of butter into a microwaveable bowl and heat on high for 30 seconds.  You want it to be soft enough to smoosh but not melted so if you’re worried you can try it for 15 seconds and check to see how it looks.  (Or if you want to be “good”, use room temperature butter.)

3.  Add the sugar and mix until the sugar looks like it’s totally absorbed in the butter.  Add the egg and vanilla then mix again.  Add the coconut, baking powder, salt, and sunflower seeds and mix well.  Add the oatmeal and the flour and mix until everything is incorporated.

4.  Line your baking sheet(s) with a piece of parchment paper.  Use an ice cream scoop or make little balls about 1-1/2 tablespoons in size and place them about 2 inches apart on the sheet.  If you keep them round and tall, you might have to bake them a little bit longer to achieve the browning that you want.  I baked mine for 13 minutes but the recipe says 10-12 minutes.

5.  Let them cool on the sheet for about a minute and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

6.  Share them with friends.  🙂

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