Sorry, I haven’t posted all week!  I’ve had a nasty cold and sore throat and haven’t been able to wear my contacts lenses for a few days therefore, I can’t see anything.  My glasses are practically useless due to an eye condition I have that requires hard lenses.  This is not an ophthalmology blog so I will not bore you with these details.  Basically, I am blindly typing this, so please bear with me. 🙂  Over the weekend I thought I was feeling better, so I decided to make some chocolate chip cookies.  I was suffering from acute cabin fever and thought chocolate chip cookies would be the ONLY things that could make me feel better.  Though they did taste good, they did not help with my sore throat.  😦  The power of the cookie failed me in that regard, but I do think these were the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever made.

I added homemade salted carmel to the batter because I like that deep taste and dimension it adds to the cookies.  I contemplated adding fleur de sel to the carmel, but then I thought why do I need to be all pretentious with chocolate chip cookies, kosher salt will work just fine for this application.  I also included a little peanut butter in the batter, not so much that you could easily discern it, but just enough that it added extra body to the cookie.  To me, a chocolate chip cookie HAS to have nuts.  I love the texture and the crunch, therefore, I poured in some toasted walnuts.  I put oats in these cookies as well.  I love the heartiness they bring to the cookie.  I added about 3/4 of a cup so that they would be a subtle texture enhancer, rather than being a full on oatmeal cookie.

These cookies were a little flat, they were not dense.  I like that aspect of them.  No, they weren’t flat like pancakes but sometimes a dense cookie is bland to me.  These were just right for my taste buds.  And, oh my, the raw cookie dough was incredible as well.  I probably ate the equivalent of 10 cookies in dough.  Oh well, the cold had me down and I needed something to cheer me up and these most certainly did.  Plus, I think any food blog is absolutely incomplete without at least one choclate chip cookie recipe.  If you don’t like chocolate chip cookies, I can easily say we will NEVER be friends HEHE *kidding*.

Salted Caramel and Walnut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Adapted from the cookie portion of the Dream Bar recipe from Gourmet Magazine

Makes about 30 large cookies

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 rolled oats

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

3/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup salted caramel, optional (I halved this recipe and added 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt, and 1 tablespoon of butter at the end)

1 heaping tablespoon peanut butter, optional

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips (8 ounces)

1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted, optional

Method

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt.  After sifting, mix the oats into the flour mixture.  In another bowl cream together sugars and butter using an electric mixer for about 3 minutes or until light yellow and fluffy.  Add in the eggs and beat with the electric mixer for another 2 minutes.  Beat in the vanilla, caramel, and peanut butter for another minute.  Gradually beat in the flour mixture on low speed until all of it is combined.   Next, fold in the chocolate chips and nuts.  I had some caramel left over and folded it in lightly so there would be some caramel swirls in the cookies.  Lighlty grease a baking tray and place heaping tablespoonfuls on batter on the tray.  Bake each batch for 10-12 minutes, or until light brown.  Allow to cool on a cooling rack,  then devour!

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