Baking | Wholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie Cookies – deep dark chocolatey + chewy + fudgy = comfort food

“Remember, there are cookies waiting here for you.”
Dean Koontz

Wholegrain brownie cookiesWholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie Cookies. A new baking recipe. An easy baking recipe. A chocolate chip cookie recipe gone healthier, yet still deeply satisfying. This is not your everyday quintessential chocolate chip cookie. This one is better. Deep dark chocolatey + chewy + fudgy = pure comfort food! I’m quite glad I got pushed into making it!

Wholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie CookiesI’ve had a busy few weeks. Getting back to routine after a vacation is never easy. So much and more needs to be done, everyone and everything needs ‘urgent’ attention for some silly reason. So the boy complained the other day that I don’t bake nice stuff often enough any more! It took me a while to figure out what the issue was because the baking never stops here. Ahem. Too much fruit in baking of late; he was cringing something chocolate! On prodding further, the words tumbled out. “Chocolate chip cookies or chocolate cake Mama please”!

Wholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie Cookies Looked like it was cookie baking time again! I’ve done loads of chocolate cake recipes of late, and as always I was thinking of a new baking recipe for cookies. Not the trusted old wholegrain chocolate chip cookie recipe. That lives in my head; I’ve baked it SO OFTEN! That is what the kid asked for. I knew exactly the thing, Wholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie Cookies. The idea has been sitting in my head for long. Just took a few words from the bitterly complainingcookie monster‘ to get it off the back burner and into the oven.

Wholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie CookiesSo I brought the brownie into the cookie, made it a healthier version, trimmed the butter, cut an egg, skipped the APF. In went wholewheat and oats, loads of dark couverture chocolate … the result was a deep, chocolatey, and very delicious chocolate chip cookie. Soft and melt in the mouth! Next time I might go for a gluten free version, maybe try going eggless.

Wholewheat & Oat Dark Chocolate Brownie CookiesEasy to bake recipes are fun. This was just that. Not quite a single bowl recipe like I would have wanted it to be, but pretty close. You can hardly go wrong with staple ingredients, but playing around has sometimes led to disasters. This one worked well thankfully, and the monster was happy that day! A healthy baking recipe which turned out to be delicious too was spot on!

Chocolate on vintage weighing scaleWhen things go well, it leaves me motivated to shoot. Even though I find chocolate a little tough to shoot, I enjoyed doing it this time. A lot. Actually the main motivation was this old weighing scale that I recently added to my ever growing prop collection. I find it so charming, that I want to shoot it all the time!

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Baking | Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt and Fluted Pistachio & Craisin Cookies … cookie l♥v

“Think what a better world it would be if we all, the whole world, had cookies and milk about three o’clock every afternoon and then lay down on our blankets for a nap.”
Robert Fulghum

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt and Fluted Pistachio & Craisin Cookies 1Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt and Fluted Pistachio & Craisin Cookies … Cookies Cookies Cookies. The events of the past week asked for something comforting … the call was for cookies! Last months Daring Bakers challenge was meant to awaken the cookie monster in us, which it did. Sadly,  I never did get down to posting them.

Pistachio & Craisin Cookies Excuses? Plenty and thankfully not too lame. Exams! Then the internet has played truant. The service provider refused to acknowledge the basic problem. A month later, after trying every solution under the sun, they finally agreed to redo the wiring {which is what we asked for in the first place}. Frustrating but true, like so many other things in life. I am happy to be back to blogging with less stress.

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt and Fluted Pistachio & Craisin Cookies Of late, I’ve been bitten by the brownie monster and it was just  a matter of time before I hit cookie mode. Daring Bakers in November set me off. Made two lots {downgraded from an ambitious 5-6}. Then the posting date passed by with intermittent internet and these poor cookies went into drafts. With the net now up and racing, I thought I’d better get them out before the bells begin to jingle louder. Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt and Fluted Pistachio & Craisin Cookies and Gingerbread Men CookiesWhen the kidlets were younger, December always woke up the cookie monster in me. The jar was never empty. I was always elbow deep in dough {well almost}. My days {and often nights} would go in backbreaking baking, frosting cookies, doing stain glass cookies, hanging dozens onto the tree, making dozens more for the kids, their friends, for orders etc.

Wholewheat Gingerbread Men Cookies 2Then the ‘forever hungry for pretty Christmas cookies’ kids grew up. I fell to easier and more practical cookies to make. I hardly ever do cookies that need dressing up and fussing over. Wholewheat Gingerbread Men Cookies are an exception though; I really enjoy doing these. {Ceramics courtesy Urban Dazzle}

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt Now I consider myself lucky if freshly baked cookies even get a chance to ‘cool completely‘! Before I know it, dirty grubby teen ‘lad’ fingers hesitatingly come forward to grab a few, while the older sister bites gently into them. The two are ALWAYS game for cookies.

Pistachio & Craisin Cookies 1I started off pretty early in November. First out of the oven were Fluted Pistachio & Craisin Cookies. Simple, crisp and delicious with craisins and pistachios adding beautiful flavour. The craisins were orange flavoured, so slight hints of orange teased the palette! Good beginning!

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt 3Then I happened to see these chippers on a beautiful blog  Reclaiming Provincial. I instantly knew they were about to happen in the near future, pretty near future. I mentally ticked off everything I loved about them …

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt They are from a book I long to own {read yet another book} Good to the Grain, Kim Boyce. Wholewheat flour only. Brown sugar too. Seemed like a good deal! They certainly were! Watch them as they bake though … they can go from brown to dark brown in a heartbeat.

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea Salt 6My cookies didn’t flatten like the ones I saw. Maybe because our Indian wholewheat is heaps different from the American whole wheat pastry flour {I presume the original recipe uses wholewheat pastry flour}. Maybe the egg I used was a tad small. Whatever, but these are darned delicious cookies!

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies with Smoked Sea SaltI did add a drizzle of honey; maybe I could have added another. There’s plenty of time for experimenting because these are good cookies and are going to show up more often! Sorry for the delay in this Daring Bakers post Peta.

Holiday season is the time for sharing and Peta of Peta Eats is sharing a dozen cookies, some classics and some of her own, from all over the world with us.

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Baking| Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies … better late than never!

“Maybe now I`ll be able to have a couple of extra cookies or ice cream after dinner without feeling so guilty. Or, without my wife yelling at me.”
David Larsen

Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip CookiesEvery new year begins with indulgence as the daughters birthday is on the 2nd of Jan! We enjoy this guilty pleasure {’twas Chocolate Orange Almond Gateau this year}. Predictably, the next day I’m hit by New Year guilt pangs. It’s time to think everything on a healthier note, especially to give the year a good beginning blah blah blah…Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies High on my list is plain flour substitutes,  as in my mind ‘plain flour = empty calories’. Extended vacations with growing kids means 24 X 7 Cookie Monsters, A L W A Y S    H U N G R Y! For me healthy doesn’t necessarily mean knocking the butter out of the cookies during winter … butter has important work to do in this incessant cold weather we are braving.Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies

The primary difference between different types of flour are the quantity of the wheat germ and bran that are milled with the flour, and the type of wheat used for the flour, and the relative protein content of that wheat.  Whole wheat flour is simply wheat that has been milled into flour with some, or all, of the germ and bran still attached.  Additionally, different varieties of wheat contain different amounts of protein, and the more protein is contained in the flour, the higher gluten it has. {Source:Hubpages.com}

India is traditionally a country where whole wheat flour {aata} is found in virtually every home, and freshly made whole wheat flat breads {rotis, chapatis, parathas etc} often accompany main meals. Until a few years ago, the use of plain flour was limited to cakes, biscuits etc. Unfortunately that is changing as people fall for the disguised charm that plain flour offers, deceptively increasing the luxury in our daily bread, yet sacrificing important proteins in the process.Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip CookiesThankfully though, there are an equal number of adventurous foodies who try to experiment with whole grains. I am one of the latter though I do tend to keep on middle ground; a little bit of plain and a little of whole grain. Other than whole wheat, I often try including buckwheat and oat in my bakes. Quinoa is one whole grain I would love to try, but the price is exorbitantly high as it is an import from South America. So my oft used alternate  is oats which are extremely nutritious, containing more protein and unsaturated fat than any other cereal grain.

Whole Grains are Much More than Fibre
Whole grains contain all three parts of the grain kernel – the germ, endosperm and bran. Most often during the milling process the bran and germ are removed leaving only the endosperm. This results in refined grains. However, whole grains contain all three parts of the grain – this makes them a richer source of fibre, vitamins and minerals.

Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip CookiesOats : The Super Whole Grain
Oats have more protein, calcium and Vitamin E than other common unfortified whole grains (wheat, brown rice or whole corn grain) on a gram per gram basis. Only oats have a high amount of soluble fibre (beta glucan) compared to whole wheat or rice. {
Source: Quaker Oats}.

Whole Grains are Much More than Fibre
Whole grains contain all three parts of the grain kernel – the germ, endosperm and bran. Most often during the milling process the bran and germ are removed leaving only the endosperm. This results in refined grains. However, whole grains contain all three parts of the grain – this makes them a richer source of fibre, vitamins and minerals.

With all these inspired thoughts in my head, I set off to make cookies, or rather chocolate chip cookies for a healthier 2011! I made a small batch as I consciously stayed away from plain flour and knew not where I was headed. The resultant cookies were a shock to my system, and I now wonder why I even bothered to look at plain flour in my chocolate chip cookies for so many years. I have always included some whole wheat by default, but was taken aback to see that using whole grains alone still gave them a fabulous texture, and handsome bite.Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip CookiesTry these, they’re worth every bite even though they don’t look very pretty. The cookie mightn’t be as indulgent as a plain flour smooth cookie if thats what you make. For me, the transition from part whole wheat to whole whole wheat was like I had won the first prize; including oats and demerera sugar giving me the runners up too. I must admit I used my precious stash of Ghirardeli dark chocolate chips in hope that the Ghirardeli would make up for loss of flavour and quintessential chocolate-chip cookie indulgence. I was soon to eat humble pie because they just added to an already delicious cookie.With this new cookie under my belt, 2011 began to feel better already almost! To prove me otherwise, the pre-teen & the teen hit the kitchen this afternoon, shrugging off the cold, and indulged in piling the calories onto my so called healthy cookies. The daughter made delicious ‘Cookies & Cream Strawberry Sundaes‘ for themselves {low fat cream being small consolation}; the son playing the loyal slave. He knew he wouldn’t get a crumb if he displeased his elder sibling; even then wasn’t ‘allowed’ as much as a lick of cream off the spatula!!Cookies & Cream Strawberry SundaeSo much so for my inspired beginning … thankfully this was just 4 cookies. The rest retained their ‘healthy’ status!!

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