This is a GF version of an American classic – and British tasters have always been impressed. The best oats to use are the larger ones, not the economical dusty bits; splash out for the big, fat, rolled oats.
I bake regularly for a large audience, so please do reduce the ingredients to make fewer cookies as you require.
Makes: 4 dozen cookies
- 230g gluten-free flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg (if you have fresh nutmeg, grate vigourously for 5 seconds)
- 190g butter, cubed and softened *
- 100g lard, cubed and softened
(* you can use all butter if you prefer, i.e., 290g)
- 50g soft dark brown sugar (dark muscavado or molasses sugar are fine)
- 200g soft light brown sugar
- 1 large egg (65-70g when weighed in its shell)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 270g uncooked rolled oats
- 100g raisins (optional)
- Two baking trays
- Baking/parchment paper to line both trays
- 1 large and 1 medium mixing bowls
- Electric mixer (hand-held or stand), if you don’t want to cream the fat/sugars by hand
- Cooling rack
- Preheat your oven to 190 C (170 C fan-assisted). Line both baking trays with paper.
- Put the flour, soda, and spices into a medium bowl, and mix with a fork. Get a sieve to hand.
- Whisk the butter, lard, and sugars in a large bowl until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla, and continue beating until it’s well combined and verging on fluffy. (If doing the creaming manually, it helps to pre-beat the egg before adding.)
- Sift the dry ingredients into the wet, and stir manually. Add the oats (and raisins, if using), and continue stirring until fully combined.
- Roll the dough between your palms into small balls, about golf-ball sized (25g), and place on the lined baking trays 3x4 with plenty of room to spread.
- Bake for around 10 minutes (turn trays halfway through), until fully spread out and golden brown. Remove the trays from the oven and leave to cool for 5 minutes so the cookies firm up, before removing them to a cooling rack. For larger amounts, leave the trays to cool at least 5 more minutes before loading up again with more dough balls, and baking.
I usually have loads of recommendations for your own creativity. However, this is one of those classics that shouldn’t be messed with too much. Raisins or not, all-butter or not, is about as far as I would go.
But – if you feel like going off-piste, some grated orange zest works, and/or some ground ginger if that takes your fancy. I even once made this with chopped, semi-soft dried apricots instead of raisins, and it was pretty good. Learn from my mistakes, though, and don’t use dates – waaay too sweet, and they’ve a tendency to burn.
My 1980s vintage Good Housekeeping Cookbook is, as ever, a reliable source for American classics. I’ve altered the recipe to be gluten-free and for British measurements, and used darker sugars for more depth of flavour.