Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

The trouble with reading memoirs is this: it forces you to consider how much time you have left on this earth to do something good. How many years do you think you have? Me? Well, let’s see. I cross a threshold this year, in about…

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com
Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

The trouble with reading memoirs is this: it forces you to consider how much time you have left on this earth to do something good. How many years do you think you have?

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

Me? Well, let’s see. I cross a threshold this year, in about one month and 7 days, I begin to check the box on the next demographic, the one that includes men and women who are at the midpoint of life. 40 seemed a lifetime away not too long ago, and frankly, I do not feel 40 in the least. That is to say, I don’t feel how the twenty-something me expected 40 to be.

The truth is, I feel better than I did at 28, or even 21. Despite the belly button that does not hide that I brought two living, breathing, humans into this world, despite the grey hair I have found, despite the shift in my metabolism I can not deny, I feel stronger, healthier and more me than I have ever felt in my life. I feel confidence, I feel inner peace.

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com
Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

But there is a part of me that wants to hold on to this age, like one might want to do before taking the plunge down a steep slide or ski slope with no end in sight. There is a part of me that fears how many healthy years I may have left in this world – will my fate go the way of my mother, who battled cancer through her forties, only to lose before she or any of us were ready to see her go? Will I age gracefully into my 90’s like my great aunt, with grandchildren to make me smile?

When I read a good memoir, I travel through time to the prime of life, through the nostalgic rear view mirror of the author. And I come to realize, now is my prime! Now is what I would write about…if I were to ever write a memoir. And if I did, would it be interesting? Am I doing the things I hope to do before it’s too late?

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

My bucket list used to include lofty goals, thrill-seeking hopes. Jumping off a plane and sky diving. Traveling to Antarctica. But I find them changing. It includes…Slicing into as many ripe tomatoes as I can. Growing artichokes in a garden. Reading my children to sleep each night. Seeing them off before school each morning. Savoring a good glass of wine with my husband. Smelling each flower in the garden. Baking a batch of cookies. Finding the thrill in every day. For as long as I can.

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies | www.kitchenconfidante.com

What things are on your bucket list? I hope you consider baking a batch of Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies one of them.

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Makes about 32 cookies | Prep: 10 minutes | Cook: 15 minutes

It's an oatmeal cookie, so it's healthy, right? Well, it was worth a shot. Rich in chocolate but homey with oats, I love having this cookie dough on hand in the freezer for those days when I need a chocolate pick me up.

Ingredients

1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup applesauce
1 1/2 cups flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I like E. Guittard Cocoa Rouge Cocoa Powder)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 cups oats
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter until light and creamy. Mix in the brown and granulated sugars, cream for about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract and mix until well incorporated. Add the applesauce and mix well.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda. Add to the mixing bowl on low speed until just combined. Stir in the oats and chocolate chunks.

Using a small ice cream scoop (or similar), form rounded balls of dough about 2 tablespoons each and place on a parchment paper lined baking tray two inches apart. Extra dough can be freezed for later baking, if you wish. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the cookies are baked through but not dry. Remove from oven and let it rest for about 1 minute on the tray. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Comments

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  1. Carol at Wild Goose Tea

    Aaah my dear. Excellent questions to be asking yourself. I am older than you by quite a bit and I am still asking myself those questions.
    It’s important to keep asking, because you are so in the pocket about your bucket list goals changing. From what I read it appears to me you are changing your satisfaction from ‘out there’ experiences to
    ‘in the core’ experiences. I smiled as I wrote that last sentence, because it is wonderful you have reached that point so young. Your inner Self is ageless. So as long as you access it, hear its gentle whispers you will feel and respond to life in an ageless manner. As we are living longer and fuller lives more than ever before in history, I feel part of my purpose in life is to be a teacher to those behind me how to live life and chronologically age with grace and gusto. Thus a glass of milk and chocolate cookies is one way to access your ever young Inner Self. Smiles—–

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      Carol, thank you so much. I do think it is about embracing life and remembering the simple pleasures — the in the core experiences have proven that it brings happiness (and it’s certainly easier to bake cookies than jump out of a plane, so that helps!). Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend!

      Reply
  2. Christina @ but i'm hungry

    I think we’d all be a bit happier if we had a bucket list filled with such simple pleasures… it’s the little stuff that makes up most of our time on this earth. These cookies are officially going on mine… and that’s a bucket list item I think I’ll need to complete very soon! ;)

    Reply
  3. cheri

    HI Liren, No matter how old I am I still am a young person in my mind it is my body that is betraying me. Lovely cookies!

    Reply
  4. Monet

    I don’t know what I love more, these rich and hearty oatmeal cookies or those words of truth. I love them both. Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  5. Simone

    You’ve said that so well Liren. Now that I just crossed that other threshold with the 5 in front I feel I think about those kind of things more often. Wondering what I will do with the remaining years and also kind of feeling the urge to do what I want to do before health or whatever will stop me. I would never have thought I would feel that way, but I do…. I try and not let age decide my actions but I don’t like getting old! :)
    Anyway, those cookies would be good at any age!

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      I hear the 50s are just as rewarding, Simone, and it just seems that life gets better and better as we age! I’m just going to go with it as best I can! Here’s to living life to the fullest, and with lots of cookies!

      Reply
  6. marcie

    I just had a birthday and I’m fast approaching another threshold, and I’m finding it hard to believe that I’m the age I am. I wish I could’ve stayed 40 forever. haha I do feel better now than I ever did in so many ways, so that has to count for something. Beautifully written post, and the cookies look amazing! You’ve put chocolate in one of my favorite cookies! Pinning. :) I hope you have a wonderful birthday planned.

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      Thank you, Marcie. I do have fun plans in store for the big birthday ahead, so that is something to look forward to! If only we could stay a certain age forever…but then it seems we learn something new with each passing year, and that is special too :)

      Reply
  7. Matt Robinson

    Wow, you are a really talented writer. I enjoyed every word of this post and relate to so much of it. I think about it every time I look at my boys, one 13 and the other 7, and another due in 2 weeks, Naomi and I always say the days are long but the years are short. So why not take some time to savor every moment, especially with delicious cookies like these? Love them!

    Reply
    • Liren Baker

      Matt, I’ve been meaning to say a big thank you, that means so much. I love how you and Naomi have such a joie de vivre, and your love for each other and your boys is evident! Congratulations on the arrival on the newest little babe, I hope you both are savoring all those baby cuddles! I admit to missing that sometimes!

      Reply
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