I have not made those cookies since the Great Oklahoman Cookie Diss of 2003, though I made them plenty of times before that. But I am definitely still scarred from the experience.
Here's a little background and a disclaimer. Heavy on the disclaimer. When this happened, my brain was addled by pregnancy hormones and a fervent homesickness for California. So, it may not have happened exactly like this, but it's how I remember it. Friends who live in Oklahoma, apologies in advance! You know I love you; I just was not cut out to be a mid-westerner.
|We definitely could not afford to live on a golf course in California!|
I had just moved to Oklahoma with my 16-month-old toddler, my husband, and a 7-month-pregnant belly. When I found out that I was going to have two kids under the age of two, I flipped out and told Jake that I wanted to be near my parents. They were working at Tinker Air Force Base at the time. So, we rented out our house here, loaded a moving truck, and relocated to the mid-west. I wasn't working and didn't know anyone, except for my parents. When I came across a flyer for a local moms' group, I decided that that was how I was going to meet some like-minded friends. They were having a cookie exchange later that month; I thought: perfect! I'll whip up some of our family favorites - six dozen was the request - , print out 20 copies of the recipe, and go meet some cool moms.
I showed up with the cookies - a double chocolate, cinnamon-scented cookie with cranberries and pistachios - and placed them on the counter. Within a few minutes a woman came up to introduce herself to me. She took a bite of one of my cookies and said, "Oh, these aren't raisins, are they?" No, they're dried cranberries. She didn't take another bite. She just peered into the cookie. "And, these aren't walnuts, are they?" No, they're pistachios. Very loudly, she declared, "Well, that's different!" It felt as if all heads turned our way and necks craned to see which cookies were different. Knowing nods. And let's just say I left with the same six dozen cookies I had come with, minus the one. It was awful. I went home and cried.
Jake, Riley, and my parents all did the dance of joy because they had six dozen cookies, minus the one, to eat all by themselves. Like I said, it might not have been quite as horrible as that, but it felt like it. Pregnancy hormones and all. I doubt that I'll make these for the Cookie Swap - I want to try something new - but I will swallow my pride and make them at some point this year. They are some of our favorites. And people in California seem to appreciate things that are "different."
Oklahoma was not wholly a bad experience, I have some great memories of our time there. But I hightailed it back home after our first tornado.
|My two boys in Oklahoma. Dylan is our "Okie."|
Camilla's Chocolate Cinnamon Cranberry Cookies
Makes 4 dozen cookies
2-2/3 C white whole wheat flour
1 t baking soda
1 t freshly ground sea salt
1 C butter
1 C organic packed brown sugar
1/2 C organic granulated sugar
1 t pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1-1/2 C dried cranberries
1 t ground cinnamon
1-1/2 C raw pistachios
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt 2 C chocoalte in a small, heavy-duty saucepan over low heat. Stir until smooth and remove from heat. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Beat butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in melted chocolate. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in remaining 2 C of chocolate, cranberries, cinnamon, and nuts. Drop by rounded teaspoon onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cookies are slightly puffed. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes. remove to wire racks and cool completely. Enjoy!