I'm weird about cookies. I usually just make them for the cookie dough and because I love to bake, but not because I really care about the end product. I’m a little more into them if there's more chocolate than dough, or if they're just really simple and buttery. But I tend to stick with the dough, which some people have a problem with. We never worried much about the raw eggs growing up, and honestly, how many people do you know who've gotten salmonella, let alone salmonella from eating cookie dough? Literally no one. So cookie dough and I continue to have a strong relationship.
These salted oatmeal apricot cookies are a different story though.
Of course, I ate the dough, which was delicious as usual, but I also could not get enough of the cookies. They're extra chewy and moist, thanks to a combination of maple syrup, brown sugar, and thick old fashioned rolled oats. The big chunks of apricots add another layer of great texture, and they also keep these cookies away from the humdrum grandma vibe of traditional oatmeal raisin. I seem to have a problem with adding flaky salt to everything sweet, but in this case I feel it really balances the sugar, adds a delightful crunch, and keeps you coming back for more-- which may or may not be a good thing!
These are big, thick cookies that stay for up to a week in a sealed container. And if your mornings are crazy and/or you're juggling a lot of stuff with a feisty baby in one arm, they make a delicious breakfast cookie that I've convinced myself is quite healthy. Apricots, oats, eggs and maple syrup? Sounds like a well-rounded breakfast to me!
salted oatmeal apricot cookies
makes about 19 (2.5 oz) cookies | recipe adapted from Zingerman’s Bakehouse “Big O cookies”
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
3 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2 cups (about 50) dried apricots, quartered
flaky salt (such as Maldon), for sprinkling on top
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
With the mixer running, add maple syrup in 4-5 additions, waiting until it's fully incorporated before adding more. Add egg and vanilla and mix until just combined (batter may look slightly curdled but that's okay).
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and slowly mix until just combined.
Add the oats and apricots and mix until evenly distributed.
Scoop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets and gently press the balls to flatten them out to about 1/2" thick disks. The cookies will spread so make sure there is plenty of space between the cookies (at least 1").
Sprinkle with flaky salt then bake for 15-17 minutes, or until the edges are just beginning to brown and the center is set.