Rich with oats, peanut butter, and chocolate, these are soft, comforting cookies.
You’d think, maybe, that these warm, toasty flavours and rich textures are better suited to cooler days. They’re actually built to be ice cream sandwiches.
Now, we Brits like our biscuits as dry as possible, as they’re supposed to be dipped into a hot mug of tea. If biccies don’t evacuate all moisture from your mouth, they’re not suitable for such a purpose. Though I fully recognise this tradition, I am not a fan of this application because it always, always leaves a surprising sludge at the bottom of the mug. I just shamelessly snarf them down alongside a cup of tea. My favourite is Hobnobs.
These cookies are a friendly cousin of Hobnobs. At room temperature, these are tender and crumbly, very slightly cake-like. The heft and chew from the coarsely ground oat flour is balanced by most of a jar of peanut butter, which gives not only deep flavour but light texture. The honey keeps everything soft, too, a whisper of its fragrance every few bites. I like a chocolate not too dark for this–54% cocoa–so it’s got a bit of depth but holds hands nicely with everything else.
Now, about those ice cream sandwiches. Tara says an ice cream with a tangy finish would be nice, so you have yet another reason to try the no-churn sour cream gelato. You’re welcome.
CHOCOLATE CHUNK PEANUT BUTTER TOASTED OAT COOKIES
Makes about 30 cookies. Adapted from oatmeal ice cream sandwiches from Seven Spoons.
Dough can be held for at least 3 days in the fridge. I keep finished cookies chilled so they’re firm; they’re good for 3 – 4 days, maybe more.
125g/1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
50g/1/4 cup dark muscovado sugar
50g/1/4 cup granulated sugar (I used light brown, so the cookies were softer)
1 UK medium (US large) egg
2 tablespoons honey
~275g/1 cup creamy natural peanut butter
Just under 125g/1 1/3 cups toasted oat flour (or normal bought/homemade oat flour), see directions below
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
175g/1 cup plain or dark chocolate, coarsely chopped, or chocolate chips (use any percentage you like; I prefer not too dark, 54% cocoa solids)
In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugars together until very light and fluffy. Add the egg, honey, and peanut butter and mix until well combined (it’ll take a bit longer than you think, owing to the thick, sticky peanut butter).
In a large mixing bowl, combine the toasted oat flour, bicarbonate soda, salt, and chocolate bits. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined to make a thick, soft dough. Chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour, up to overnight.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/160 fan (350 degrees F). Line two baking trays with paper.
Roll the dough into 1 1/2 inch balls and place them on a baking sheet 2 inches apart, using a second baking sheet as necessary. You should have about 30 cookies. Bake, rotating the trays halfway through, until the outer edges turn golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.
TOASTED OAT FLOUR
Makes just under 125g, enough for 1 quantity of cookies.
Put under 125g/1 1/4 cups rolled oats in a large pan and toast over a medium-low heat, adjusting as needed to prevent scorching. Stir constantly until the oats smell warm and nutty and are slightly crisp, maybe visibly deepened in colour.
Grind the mixture until it resembles a coarse flour (think wholemeal) using absolutely any device available to you. If you’re using a spice/coffee grinder or pestle & mortar, you’ll find it easier to complete this 1/3 at a time. (I did this entirely by hand in a mortar and it only took about 1 – 2 minutes grinding per round, so not too arduous a task.)
You don’t strictly need to toast oats for flour if you’ve a machine–just pulse the same amount of normal oats in a processor or blender. Grinding crisp, brittle oats by hand is much easier; the heightened toasty fragrance is a bonus.