I made these cookies for a recent dessert reception at my church, and I totally fell in love with them. In fact, they may have been my favorite of the three types of cookies I made, even though the other two varieties included chocolate! These cookies are moist, chewy, and super spicy from cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom. Dried cherries and dried apricots add fantastic tart bursts of flavor throughout the cookies. This is also a great recipe to make for a large gathering, since it makes about a zillion cookies. You could also make larger cookies for a smaller yield, or make a half recipe if you're just cooking for a smaller group.
Spiced Oatmeal Cookies with Dried Cherries and Apricots (adapted from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking)
Makes 5 to 6 dozen small cookies
1-1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
2 sticks softened butter
1-1/4 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2-3/4 cups quick oats (not instant oats)
6 ounces dried cherries
3 ounces dried apricots, diced
1. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom and set aside.
2. Beat together the butter and sugars until smooth and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the vanilla and beat to incorporate.
3. Add the flour mixture and stir in with a rubber spatula until the flour is mixed in enough not to fly out of the mixer. Then beat until just incorporated. Add the oats and beat until just combined. Stir in the cherries and apricots with a rubber spatula.
4. Cover the bowl and chill at least 6 hours or overnight.
5. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees and line two baking sheets with foil or parchment.
6. Scoop out about 1 tablespoon of dough per cookie, and gently roll into a ball with your palms. Bake 10-12 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through, until the cookies just begin to brown.
7. Cool the cookies on a wire rack.