A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of visiting the store and bakery at King Arthur Flour in Norwich, VT. KAF is the maker of the Organic 100% White Whole Wheat Flour I love using for my pizza dough, hamburger buns, and every day bread. White whole wheat flour is pretty amazing stuff – it allows us to make baked goods that are completely whole grain but still have the tenderness we’ve become accustomed to in years of eating white flour.
While I have been an avid fan in breads, I have generally stuck to whole wheat pastry flour in muffins and cookies. After my visit to the KAF store, however, I was perusing the extensive recipe catalog on their website and curious about whole grain cookies that use white whole wheat flour (KAF doesn’t actually sell whole wheat pastry flour, so that could have something to do with their recipes as well!). If you have not visited the website yet, you should definitely check it out – there are recipes for everything, well thought-out comments from reviewers, and if you have any questions, a live chat feature where you can get answers from expert bakers!
Getting back to the recipe at hand, while I am very happy with my Healthier Oatmeal Cookie recipe as a wholesome dessert treat, I haven’t given up on the idea that maybe there’s a better whole grain cookie out there. I decided to try a few from the KAF website, starting with one for Oatmeal and Flax Cranberry cookies. I often add flax meal into my Healthier Oatmeal Cookies, but really liked that the flax was actually built into this recipe. I was also curious about how different a cookie would be when made with butter instead of oil. And I think the answer is, when it comes to cookies, butter is better. These cookies are more cohesive and richer. The oats give them nice texture and the flax makes them really hearty, but the addition of dark chocolate chips push these over the edge to being decadent even without tons of sugar and with NO refined grains. I’m starting to be ready to throw my all purpose flour away for good, but I have one more cookie recipe coming up soon that may be the clincher if you’re not already convinced!
Oatmeal Flax Cookies
adapted from King Arthur Flour
1 cup (2 sticks) soft butter – I know, this sounds like a lot, but this recipe makes a lot of cookies!
3/4 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
3/4 cup flax meal
1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips (or dried fruit)
1/2 to 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
In a large bowl, beat together the butter, brown sugar, vanilla, baking soda, salt, and egg until fluffy. Mix in the flour, oats, flax meal, chocolate chips, and nuts (if using).
Let the dough rest for 30 minutes or so at room temperature, for the oats to soften. Towards the end of the rest period, preheat the oven to 350 and lightly grease two baking sheets, or line them with parchment paper.
Scoop the dough by tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets. Flatten each ball of dough slightly (cookies will not spread, so create whatever cookie shape you like – I recommend keeping them on the thick side!).
Bake the cookies for 10 minutes, until just brown around the edges. Cool them on the baking sheets for 10 minutes or so, to allow them to set. Move them to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
Makes not quite 4 dozen cookies.