It’s a little bit strange getting back to being in the kitchen after many days away and traveling.
As most of you know, I’ve been in San Diego for the past week. Ironically enough, my father had booked tickets to a concert in Spokane the day I returned so it feels like even longer since I’ve been back to my typical daily routine. I’m not going to lie, it’s been really nice to get a change of scenery. On the other hand, I do like a little routine to help me stay more productive, so a mixture of the two is perfect.
Another nice thing about traveling this time of year is escaping the cold weather. I remember telling you guys recently before leaving that it had been unusually warm here. Well, as I suspected the Winter isn’t quite done yet and my sister and I got home to some bitter temperatures. In fact, last night’s low broke records. It was about -7 degrees Fahrenheit. Let’s just say the beach sounds really good about now.
While I was traveling I talked to so many people from all over the world. I guess California attracts all kinds. Tell me if I’m wrong, but I’d say for the most part the world is starting to rely more and more on technology and the internet. I mean, just simply navigating in the city, my sister and I were using our phone’s GPS and using them for Uber, and staying connected to family. Not to mention sharing bits of the trip with you guys.
That’s why it really surprised me that so many of the people I talked to asked me what a blogger was when I told them that’s what I do. I don’t know, I just thought it was more common these days. When I was living in South America it was more understandable for people I met to be unfamiliar with blogging, but I’d have thought in San Diego it wouldn’t be such a mystery. Granted, most of these people were a little bit before my generation, but still. Hmm, guess we’ll have to give it another decade or so, right?
My sister’s birthday is this week and she and my brother-in-law just got home from a trip of their own to Seattle. On their trip they ate a Cheesecake Factory and ordered the Godiva cheesecake. She loved it so much that I’m going to try a little copycat version, so that just might have to be a recipe appearing on the blog soon.
For today though, I’m sharing these oatmeal cookies that I made before I left for California actually. The past few weeks, in case you haven’t noticed from this salad and this berry filled trifle, I’ve been really getting in the mood for an early spring and I think my recipes have been reflecting that.
So something we love to do up here, during the warmer weather days mid to late Summer, is pick the mountain huckleberries that you can find growing wild up in Sandpoint where my aunt and uncle live. I’d really hoped to go with them to pick while I was staying with them through the summer. Of course, my 4-wheeler accident changed those plans a lot so I wasn’t able to pick any this past season to freeze for later. I mean, you can buy them from the local markets but they cost an arm and a leg (and you’d understand why once you’ve spent a whole afternoon for a single bucket full.)
So my older sister created a family favorite when she decided to make huckleberry white chocolate cookies one year, and now they are a seasonal must.
Now that we’re getting closer to berry season again I wanted to make something similar to her recipe but without having any huckleberries i thought I’d try using some blueberries instead. Just until I get huckleberries + they can be interchangeable in this recipe) Almonds have been on my radar a lot recently too so they made their way into these cookies, and the white chocolate is clearly non-negotiable. Ah yes, and I decided that some oats to make them feel a little more wholesome for snacking.
The final cookies were pretty perfect if I do say so myself. You get the tart pockets of baked blueberries, the creamy sweet bites of white chocolate, and the nutty crunch from the almonds with the oatmeal cookie base to balance it all out. Yep, perfection.?
Nutty, tart, sweet, and wholesome. These cookies have it all and they make the perfect treat or snack for anytime of the day.
- 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) butter, room temp
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries (*see note)
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 2/3 cup white chocolate chips
- 1/3 cup slivered almonds
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Cream butter and sugars together in bowl of stand mixer (or with hand mixer). Scrape sides of bowl and add egg; beat until well combined. Add vanilla, soda, and salt then add the flour one cup at a time and beat after each addition. Then add the oats. (If you are using a hand mixer you may have to hand stir the last cups of oats into the dough.) Stir in the berries by hand and then chocolate, and almonds and line a cookie sheet with parchment.
- Roll the dough into balls, about 2 tablespoons each, and place about 2 inches apart on baking sheet. I like to top with some extra berries, white chocolate, and almonds, but that's optional.
- Bake for 14 - 16 minutes until edges just start to turn golden brown. Remove from oven and cool for about 5 minutes before moving to cooling rack.
*You can replace the blueberries with another similar berry such as huckleberries, boysen berries, and I've even done blackberreies and raspberries. (You can use fresh berries if folded in carefully but for larger berries it's best to use frozen to keep them from making the dough wet and sticky and ending up with what my brothers like to call "zombie cookies" as they'll be all purple. Still delicious though😉 )