It’s time for another Creative Cookie Exchange! This time our theme is a very seasonal apples; I love apple desserts and dishes in the fall, so the choice was really a no brainer. Anything apple counts–I am kind of embarrassed to admit that in this time of (fresh picked apple) plenty, I used dried. Picture my embarrassed face. I found the cutest little bag of dried apples mixed with (about 4:1 ratio) dried cranberries and just instantly knew I was using them.
Amusingly, it turns out I am not very good at varying my apple desserts. I suspect if you did a search on here you would discover that every single apple dessert I have includes streusel. If I had made these bars with, for example, dried cherries, I would have just left them as oatmeal bars. But because I was thinking apples, I had to find a way to add cinnamon, crumbly brown sugar, pecans and oats. It is like a compulsion. And I cannot say I regret that fact, even if these are kind of over the top.
The topping itself turned out a little loose; Alex helped me bake these (what am I saying? she basically did it all) and when I told her to add 1/4 cup of flour to the streusel topping, she used the 1 cup measuring cup (my back was turned). In my attempt to fix it, I did not add enough extra butter. So eating these was a bit messy–but they were all eaten, so clearly we were not dissuaded.
Guys I love this group! Probably because I love cookies so much! So I really hope you guys bake some apple cookies with us this month! To join in the fun, just complete the steps below:
1. Write a blog post with recipe and original photo. The theme this month is apples. The recipe can use apples in any form-dried, fresh, apple butter, apple brandy, you name it. We would like the recipe to be one you’re making for the first time, and photos must be original.
2. Post the Cookie Exchange badge somewhere on your blog so others can join in the fun:
3. Make a good faith effort to visit and comment on the other cookies in the Linky party. We all love cookies so that should be easy!
4. LIKE the Creative Cookie Exchange Facebook Page
5. FOLLOW the Creative Cookie Exchange Pinterest Board
6. LINK your blog post below using the Linky tool
You can also just use us as a great resource for cookie recipes–be sure to check out our Facebook page, our Pinterest Board, and our monthly posts. You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration for this month’s theme, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made so far:
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- ¾ cup packed light-brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- ½ t salt
- ½ cup AP flour
- ½ cup white whole wheat flour
- 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
- 1 cup dried apples chunks with some dried cranberries mixed in
- 1 t Vietnamese cinnamon
- ½ t ginger
- ½ t allspice
- For streusel topping:
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ¼ cup white whole wheat flour
- 1 cup brown sugar
- pinch of salt
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cubed and cold
- ½ vietnamese cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan and line with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, salt and spices. Mix in the dried apples and cranberries and oats. Set aside.
- Whisk together the butter and sugars. Whisk in the eggs. Pour into the dry ingredients and fold until combined.
- Scrape the batter into prepared pan and level with a spatula.
- Whisk together the flour, salt, cinnamon and sugar for the streusel topping. Mix in the oats. Rub or cut the cold butter into the oat mixture, and then mix in the chopped pecans.
- Squeeze the streusel topping into clumps and then sprinkle evenly over the oatmeal dough. Press lightly into the oatmeal dough.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool completely in the pan. Using paper overhang, lift cake onto a work surface; slice into bars.