Monday, August 28, 2017

Soft-Baked Breakfast Nuggets

Raise your hand if you commute to work.

How about if that commute is more than 30 minutes?

When did life get so weird that a one hour commute to work is average? That means it is normal. Normal kinda sucks.

But you know what makes that normal a little less boring? Car food!

I rarely get specific requests from Jon since he is more of a salty chip kinda guy, but what I do hear a few times a month is "Can you make those breakfast cookies again?". This time it came with a special request... "Can you make them in a log shape so I can eat them easily in the car?". 

Yes, OK. I can do that because I know my clean-freak husband is terribly bothered by crumbing. A narrow cookie fits more neatly in the mouth which means any crumbs will fall nicely inside and not on the lap. I get it. (weirdo).

This recipe is a regular for me, making a double batch a couple times a month. They make a great 3pm snack and I crumble them over yogurt when I run out of granola.

The best part is they are soft and they STAY soft. Try it yourself and you'll see - soft chewy nuggets for the whole week!

How do you keep cookies soft and chewy?

Liquid sugar! For me that means honey - 3 tablespoons go into this batch of dough with dark brown sugar and white sugar. Honey is a humectant which means that it attracts and binds water so that your cookies don't get dry.

These nuggets that contain no chicken are sufficiently nourishing as far as cookies go containing whole wheat flour, rolled oats, almonds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, raisins and cranberries.

If you think chocolate chips are appropriate, I will not disagree.

If you commute like the rest of us, then enjoy this low-crumbing, distraction-free breakfast that might give you a drive worth anticipating. 

Soft-Baked Breakfast Nuggets
Makes about 20 nuggets

1 cup (142g) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (35g) whole wheat flour
¾ cup (75g) old-fashioned large flake rolled oats
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
6 tbsp (84g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup (110g) packed dark brown sugar
¼ cup (50g) granulated sugar
3 tbsp golden honey
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
70g (about ½ cup) whole almonds, coarsely chopped
1.5 oz (about 1/3 cup) sunflower seeds
2 tbsp sesame seeds
¼ cup raisins
¼ cup dried cranberries

Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together both flours, oats, ground cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt until evenly blended; set aside.

In a large bowl, beat together butter, sugar and honey until smooth and creamy using an electric hand mixer on high speed, about 1 minute. Beat in egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Add flour mixture all at once to the butter mixture and beat on low speed until it is mostly combined, about 10-15 seconds.

Use a rubber spatula to fold in almonds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, raisins and dried cranberries all at once. 

Role about 1.5 oz mounds of dough into 2-inch logs and place them onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 3 inches apart. Bake until golden brown around the edges, about 12-15 minutes.

Let cookies cool on the pan for about 1 minute before transferring them individually to a wire rack to cool completely. These stay soft and chewy for days in an airtight container!
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