Monday, February 25, 2013

Recipe Corner: No Bake Cookies

No Bake cookies are a tradition in our household. They were the first cookie my sister and I learned how to make and they never fail to please the masses. 

The recipe is pretty straight forward. But be sure you follow the directions I provide at the end of the tutorial as deviation SCREWS things up royally LOL. 

First off, measure your sugar. Make sure it's sugar and not salt. Or else you'll have cookies to rival Loretta Lynn's Chocolate Cream Pie in Coalminer's Daughter. 

Add your milk and...

Butter or margarine (margarine works best) and I cut my margarine in fourths because it's easier to melt this way. 

And your cocoa. Beware... This part gets messy really quick if you're not careful. Cocoa sticks to EVERYTHING.

Put it in your sauce pan 

And mix the stuff together. Yes, it looks disgusting... But it will taste heavenly. 

Before you start cooking it, make sure you have all your other items handy and already measured out. 

Get your waxed paper, or parchment, whichever you have and spread a couple sheets over your work surface. You'll probably need to weigh it down with something to keep it from curling up.

Measure out your vanilla. If you use something like Watkins, which is double strength pure vanilla, you'll only want to use half the amount the recipe calls for. If not, you'll be completely blown out of the water with vanilla flavoring. Personally, I love Watkins vanilla. It's a little overpriced, but sooooo worth it.

Measure out your uber messy peanut butter. You can also use crunchy. My mom and hubs both prefer no bakes with crunchy peanut butter, I'd rather have creamy. It's all a matter of texture and taste. And if you have crunchy peanut butter in the house or not. And we do not. So they were SOL this time.

And get your oats ready. Make sure they're quick cooking oats. I'm sure you can use others, but these are the ones we've always used. My best friends mom used to use the big flat oats when we were growing up and they weren't too bad. Just a different texture. 

OK. You've got the ingredients together and your arsenal should look like this:

Make sure to get a hot pad ready so you can set your pot on it or it'll screw up your counter top. 

Start warming the milk/sugar/cocoa mixture on the stove top over medium high heat. 
It'll start looking like this...

Then look like this. I always get mesmerized by the patterns the cocoa makes. Never fails to make me smile.

After a bit you'll start seeing some bubbles around the edges. You don't need these. You need big bubbles everywhere

Like this!

Now set your timer for 3 minutes after fiddling with it to clear out the previous time. 

Once you're done with your three minutes....
Throw the peanut butter, vanilla and oats in stirring vigorously  If I had an extra hand or an assistant, I could have taken pictures of the rest of this process but alas, I am not Ree Drummond. *sigh*

Once you're done, using a tablespoon, spoon your mix onto the wax paper and let sit. 

And these lovely poo-looking piles of goodness will be ready to eat as soon as they're cooled. Or sooner... Depending on if you want to burn your tongue to hell and back licking the spoon and pot. Like me. 

No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

2 c. Sugar
1/2 c. Milk
1/4 c. Cocoa
1 stick Margarine (recipe calls for Oleo lol)
Combine in saucepan and boil for three minutes. Remove from heat and add:
1 tbsp Vanilla (or 1/2 tbsp of vanilla for stronger versions)
3 c. Quick Oats
1/4 c. Peanut Butter.

Drop by tablespoons on wax paper and let stand until hard.*

*Now I will tell you something. If the humidity is too high, the no bakes will take forever to set up if they even do. If the kitchen is too hot, the no bakes will not set up. If the kitchen is too cold, the no bakes will be harder than rocks in less than 10 minutes. Store in an airtight container in a relatively warm, but not overly warm room. They can last forever. Until you eat them all.

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