Another summer gone, and gosh, it went fast. I remember as a kid, summers seemed to be never-ending. I’d spend hours each day riding my bike, swimming, or exploring, only surfacing to eat and sleep. And when summer ended and school started up again I actually felt refreshed…like I had had a sufficient break. Not so anymore; summers these days are a fleeting moment or a passing glance.
I’m not complaining though. Actually, I prefer crisp days and chilly nights…cable knit sweaters and soft blankets…steaming bowls of soup or cups of cider. Fall, with its beautiful foliage, abundance of apples, and almost palpable sense of anticipation, is my absolute favorite time of year.
Even though I would never give up baking completely during summer’s heat, what I love about the weather turning colder is that it really makes home feel more homey…and it makes baking even more enjoyable. In the wake of a few chilly, rain-filled days, cookies seemed like the perfect thing to brighten up a dreary week.
Yields about 2 1/2 dozen cookies
1/3 cup butter, at room temperature
1/3 cup vegetable shortening, at room temperature
1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
3/4 cup butterscotch chips (you can add up to 1 1/2 cup, but I go light because they are so sweet!)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat the oven to 375F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat liners.
Cream together the butter and shortening in a large bowl; cream in the sugar, then stir in the eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Gradually stir the dry ingredients into the wet, then mix in the oats, butterscotch chips, and walnuts. Chill the dough until stiff but not completely hard, about 10 to 15 minutes in the freezer.
Scoop the dough onto the prepared sheets, leaving about 2 to 3 inches between each cookie (I use a 1 1/2 tablespoon measure to scoop out the dough). Bake until the cookies are light golden brown on the edges and look ever so slightly doughy in the center, about 10 to 12 minutes, rotating the trays once halfway through cooking. Cool for 5 to 10 minutes, on the tray, then transfer to a parchment paper-lined surface to finish cooling.
Do you like my new wooden utility board? I received it from the generous people at Makai’s — thank you, Makai’s! It’s a really sturdy board with a lovely design. There was just one small thing I didn’t like about it, which was that directly out of the box (prior to me even wiping it with a damp cloth), the finish was a bit uneven (see the bottom right corner of the wooden utility board in the photo above — it looks a bit worn). That small flaw doesn’t effect the functionality though, and other than that it’s perfect.