The Art of Being Neighborly

I am about a year late to the “being neighborly” game. Part of the southern DNA is to welcome people, even if it’s just to learn their gossip (you know Clairee would agree). When I moved to San Francisco, I had every intention of baking a scrumptious treat and introducing myself to the neighbors. Fast forward about a year and I’m ashamed to say that did not happen. Life got in the way.

So imagine my surprise when I came home one evening to find a sweet parcel on my doorstep. My neighbor left me a dozen delicious cookies “just because.” San Francisco, you surprise me sometimes.

Encouraged by my neighbor’s kind gesture, I decided to pay it forward as I intended to do months ago. I had been eyeing a recipe on Pinterest for a few weeks and seeing my opportunity, I jumped on it. Allow me to introduce you to that inspiration: Brown Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. Divine.

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I followed the recipe from the How Sweet It Is  blog but added a teaspoon of melted coconut oil to the batter. I also baked these for 8 minutes instead of the recommended 10. (I like my cookies scrumptiously chewy and 8 is the magic number.)

After cooling down, these bad boys were wrapped up and given to my downstairs neighbor.

Here’s the recipe in it’s entirety. I highly recommend you drop what you’re doing and make these immediately. They are delightfully gooey and go “oh so well” with your afternoon coffee/tea pick-me-up. (Or you could pay it forward and channel your inner neighborly spirit.) Whatever you choose to do, these will certainly brighten your afternoon up.

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cups rolled oats

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 cup chocolate chunks

(I added 1 teaspoon of melted coconut oil)

optional: 1- 2 tablespoons milk, if dough is crumbly

Heat a small saucepan over medium-low heat and add butter. Whisking constantly, cook butter until bubbly and until small brown bits appear on the bottom of the pan – about 5-6 minutes. Watch closely and immediately remove the butter from the heat, whisking for an additional 30 seconds or so. Set aside and let cool COMPLETELY. Note: It does not need to solidfy at all, but it should not be warm to the touch.

In a bowl, combine flour, salt, baking powder, oats and cinnamon, mixing, then set aside.

Once butter has cooled, add to a large bowl. Whisk in sugars, stirring until smooth. Add in egg and vanilla, whisking until smooth once again. Slowly begin to stir in dry ingredients, using your hands if necessary (I always do) to bring dough together. If you find that the dough still won’t come together, add in milk 1 tablespoon at a time (I rarely have to do this.) Fold in chocolate chips, distributing them evenly. Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Using an ice cream scoop or your hands, form dough into 1 1/2 inch balls. Place about 2 inches apart on a nonstick baking sheet, then bake for 10-12 minutes, or until bottoms and edges are golden. Let cool before serving.

-Recipe from How Sweet It Is

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