Today is Cookie Monster's birthday. In my opinion, we all have a little bit of Cookie Monster inside us. I know I do. There is nothing like sitting down and eating several dozen cookies in one sitting and then lying down on the floor, groaning and clutching your belly.  What better way to celebrate than to make a bunch of cookies and eat them? Here is a delicious cookie recipe from one of my many new favorite cookie cookbooks for you to try at home!

  • PRO TIP: I keep myself pretty well stocked with delicious fresh-baked cookies throughout the year by making large batches and freezing the dough in ready-to-bake, cookie-sized balls. Then when you want warm cookies right out of the oven you just take them out of the freezer, put them on a cookie sheet and bake them, adding a few minutes to the baking time because the dough is frozen. As an added bonus, I find you get a crispier outside with a chewier center when you use frozen dough. OM NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM!!! 

Milk Chocolate-Orange Cookies

From Milk & Cookies by Tina Casaceli

The flavors in this cookie are quite subtle but very enticing. A hint of orange combines with the milk chocolate changes the base dough completely, giving it incomparable richness.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Ingredients:
Vanilla Base Dough:
2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats, or 2 cups oatmeal flour
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 Tbsp. vanilla extract

2 Tbsp. Grand Marnier liqueur
2 Tbsp. freshly grated orange zest
2 cups milk chocolate chunks
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  • Line two baking sheets with nonstick silicone baking mats or parchment paper and set aside.
  • Put the oats in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade and process until finely ground. Transfer the ground oats to a mixing bowl. Stir in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • Put the butter in the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle. Begin beating on low speed to soften. Increase the speed to medium and beat for about 3 minutes, or until light and creamy.
  • With the motor running, gradually add the granulated sugar and then the brown sugar, beating until very light and creamy.
  • Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat to incorporate, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and when blended, slowly beat in the reserved dry mixture.
  • While the dough is still streaky, beat in the liqueur and orange zest. Remove the bowl from the mixer and scrape the paddle clean (ed. I recommend using your mouth for this).
  • Lightly flour a clean, flat work surface.
  • Scrape the dough onto the floured surface. Lightly flour your hands and finish mixing the dough by using a gentle kneading motion, working until the dough is just blended. Do not overwork the dough. You want to be certain that all of the ingredients are just blended together.
  • Using a wooden spoon, stir in the chocolate and pecans, mixing until evenly distributed. You can also do this in the mixer, but heavy mixing tends to break up the chocolate and nuts, and the baked cookies will have an undesireable dry texture.
  • Using a tablespoon or small ice-cream scoop, make mounds of dough. Roll the dough into balls about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Place the balls about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Using your palm, gently flatten each ball to make a puck-like shape about 2 inches in diameter.
  • When all of the cookies are formed, place in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes, or until lightly browned around the edges and set in the center. Do not overbake; you want some chewiness in the center.
  • Remove from the oven and, using a metal spatula, transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool.
  • Store, airtight, at room temperature for up to one week.

These cookies are so good! We have so many more cookie books, not to mention cookie cutters, and all of them are making me go cookie-crazy right now. Stop in some time and check them out, but you have to promise to return with the fruits of your labor. ME. WANT. COOKIES.

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So, what do you think?