Years ago there was an Internet legend story passed around about a woman who went to the famous department store Neiman-Marcus and had lunch in the restaurant there.  The story said that the woman asked for the recipe for the restaurant’s oatmeal cookie recipe and got the recipe plus a bill for hundreds of dollars for the recipe.  She then sent out emails with the recipe on it to all her friends because she was so mad at the store for charging so much for that recipe. This is a famous Internet hoax that comes in other versions, like the Mrs. Fields cookie and the Famous Amos versions.  The story may be a hoax but the recipe is real and here it is….even though it is very similar to the recipe you may find on thousands of oatmeal boxes.  But even if the story is a hoax I just had to try it, and I did and now my kids love these “computer cookies!” Ingredients for a single recipe – I used to double this but that produces too much dough and this dough is a little bit stiff and a double batch overpowers my mixer! 1 cup butter at room temperature (2 sticks) 2 cups flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon baking powder ½ cup white sugar 1 ½ cups brown sugar 2 ½ cups blended oatmeal (see instructions) 6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips (this is half the usual because I don’t like lots of chips – feel free to add more!) ½ teaspoon salt 1 Hershey chocolate bar, 4 ounces, grated coarsely (this allows you to cut back on the chips) 2 eggs, beaten (Try 3-4 eggs for a flatter, smoother version of the cookie; use just one if using jumbo eggs.) 1 ½ cups chopped nuts (I use pecans.  Toast them first at 200 degrees for about 12 minutes if you have time) 1 teaspoon vanilla To make a good oatmeal cookie, I think the secret is to chop up the oatmeal in a blender or food processor to get a good consistency.  Measure the oatmeal before you blend, and blend it in small batches so your blender does not clog or overheat.  I don’t like blending it to a very fine powder, but almost.  I like a little of the gravelly oatmeal texture in the cookie to show through.  Set aside. Cream together the butter and the both sugars.  It’s easy if you let the butter come to room temperature first.  Now add everything but the flour and oatmeal - the chocolate chips, nuts, grated Hershey bar, eggs, salt, baking powder, baking soda and vanilla and mix them well.  Finally, add the flour and the blended oatmeal.  This gets hard to mix, so I hope you have an electric mixer!  Either that, or try cutting this recipe in half. Take a large spoonful of this dough and roll it into a ball and place on an ungreased cookie sheet about 2 inches apart from other spoonfuls.  This recipe will fill several cookie sheets.  Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 12-13 minutes.  Like any cookie recipe, these baking times are estimates.  Your oven may be cooler or hotter than mine.  Watch for the cookie to spread out to a cookie shape and brown a bit, without burning the bottom of the cookie.  You will have to experiment to get the right baking time for your oven.  When testing cookies for doneness, remember that they will get a little more crispy as they cool.  If you prefer a softer cookie, try eliminating the baking soda. Cool and enjoy!
Oatmeal Cookies
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