Flourless Peanut Butter Oatmeal M&M Cookies
Sunday night, and I am pooped. Mama Shaw was in town this weekend and we had a jam-packed weekend of house projects. Of course, all of these and more are documented at the end of this post. So after I dropped Mom off at the train back to ghetto Connecticut tonight, I came home and needed to figure out what I was baking this week. I needed something simple. After painting for 4 hours in 90 degree 100% humidity yesterday and using power tools before 8am today, simple was the only thing I could handle. And in honor of my favorite mama, gluten-free of course. I like going out to eat with my mom because I feel like I am her gluten-free body guard. I make sure the hostess gives us a gluten-free menu or explains where we can find the GF options. And if a waiter doesn’t seem to get it, I get a little sassy to make sure they know I will lay a smack down if they eff up her order. (like the time I walked out of a restaurant this summer when the waitress messed things up.) She’s not trying to be trendy jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon. She’s one of the original celiacs diagnosed 10 years ago before there were aisles of gluten free food, and when one waitress in Florida brought us a “glue-free menu” that she checked herself and didn’t have any glue on it. (we left that restaurant).
Anyways, Boston is a very gluten-free friendly city, so it’s great when Mom comes to visit because we can eat at a lot of restaurants and have many options. We have a Foodie’s market in Southie which has tons of gluten-free options for grocery shopping. The Cheesecake Factory is by far the best in terms of having more options than you can imagine. But we also had great dinners at Joe’s American Bar + Grill on Newbury Street and Rosa Mexicano in the Seaport. Our waiter at Joe’s tonight (who I think I scared a bit) told us his “bestie” was gluten free so he knew the drill. I’ve been trying to figure out some stomach issues of my own lately, and tried a gluten elimination diet last week which left me feeling a lot better than usual, so I’m going to try to stay with the gluten-free eating for a bit until I can go back to my doctor – which of course means tonight’s cookies were going to need to be gluten-free and delicious. Two words which used to not go hand-in-hand, but I’m on a mission to start making more gluten-free treats that aren’t crazy hard but still taste good.
I found these Flourless Peanut Butter Oatmeal cookies on one of my favorite blogs Sally’s Baking Addiction and decided to add my own twist with mini M&Ms. I’ve also been on this make-my-own-peanut butter kick for the past few weeks which came in handy for this recipe. Taking a jar of honey roasted peanuts and letting them get all nice in the food processor is so easy and SO delicious. If you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend it. It will save you the trip to Whole Foods for their fresh PB. I made the peanut butter earlier this afternoon and left it in the fridge to chill, since it does get a bit warm. I picked up these mini M&Ms in Target this afternoon so substituted them instead of chocolate chips. These are so easy you don’t need a mixer if you don’t feel like lugging it out. I’ll definitely be making different variations of these soon.
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup peanut butter
- 6 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup mini M&Ms
- 2/3 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg first. Then add in the peanut butter and light brown sugar and mix well. I used homemade honey roasted peanut butter, but store bought works well too. If using natural peanut butter just make sure to stir it really well before adding it, or it will be too oily.
Step 2: In a separate bowl mix the oats, cinnamon and baking soda, and then add to the wet mixture. Use some elbow grease to really mix well. (I used up all my elbow grease this weekend so used my mixer. yolo.)
Step 3: Add in the mini M&Ms and mix just until they are incorporated. Chill the dough for about 30 minutes. This step is important to help the dough stick together.
Step 4: Using a medium-size cookie scoop, place even-size balls of dough on a parchment or sil-pat-lined baking sheet. You will need to roll these in your hand first to make sure they stick together. If they are too oily you can pat them lightly with a paper towel. Bake at 350 degrees for about 9 minutes. They will seem a little undercooked but let them sit on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
You know what? Not too bad. They aren’t quite as sugary as normal oatmeal cookies I make, but the peanut butter and chocolate combo is still sweet and these definitely taste like a treat. And not a piece of moldy styrofoam like some gluten-free cookies do. So I’m going to need to get myself on Pinterest and start figuring out different gluten-free cookie bases, the same way I have memorized a good regular oatmeal base, peanut butter base, and chocolate chip cookie base. One I nail a few good gluten-free cookie bases I’ll start dominating the baking scene with my salted cookie spin. Like Superman for Celiacs. To infinity and beyond! Or Buzz Gluten-Free Lightyear. Oh man, I am tired.
So let’s get right to the good stuff. Last week Mom and I planned out our schedule for this weekend (OCD project planning much?) So we got up bright and early Saturday morning and got to work. I used my extreme couponing skills last weekend to order the rest of my bedroom set from Pottery Barn, which arrives next weekend. So I needed to sell my current bedroom set and paint the bedroom this weekend, so that it will be all ready for the new furniture to fit in. I’ve had my bedroom set since I was like 8 years old. It’s why I am a firm believer in buying really good quality furniture instead of cheap stuff that will fall apart in a few years. When I was moving out of my last apartment I sold a 25-year old rocking chair for $100 that I told the guy was 5 years old, since it was in such good shape. My current bedroom set was literally 21 years old, and because my parents were smart and got glass toppers for all of the pieces, they were all in almost perfect condition still. So some lucky Craigslisters bought my furniture, and then we decided to open the windows and paint the room in the 90 degree heat and 100% humidity. Holy sweat. My WOD was about 100 trips up and down the ladder, and painting all the trim up near the ceiling. (I started crossfit last week, btu that’s a story for another post). I also painted 6 color swatches on the wall last week, and we were undecided between 3 and said we would decide before we went to Home Depot. But it wasn’t until we were pulling into the Home Depot parking lot that we realized we never picked a color. Luckily, I had some of the paint SKUs written down on a post-it in my purse and we finally went with the color Zen by Behr, and it is PERFECT. Check out these before and afters.
BEFORE:After, TA DA!
We also put our collective extreme couponing skills to good use during a Labor Day sale last week and got all brand-new blinds from JCPenney. We went with nice wooden blinds for the guest room and family room to block out any view of Crazy Eddie. And then in my bedroom in the front of the house, these blackout shades that also pull down to let tons of light in during the day. I was using a power drill before 8am today. WHO AM I? And only broke off one drill bit into the top of a window frame.
We scored some good deals at Home Goods and Target today, so I just need to find a mirror for my bedroom over the new vanity and then I’ll be all set. I’m going to take my time to find some good wall art for my bedroom. The wall color is just so calming and zen (fitting) that I want to not do my usual crazy hang up as much stuff as possible, and take my time with it.
Aside from house projects, the highlight of last week was getting this book in the mail from one of my favorite blogs How Sweet Eats. I love her sense of humor and all of the recipes look, well, seriously delish! This is the ultimate goal for one day. Salted Cookie cookbook anyone?
So that’s it. I’m glad I’m overly exhausted today because then I don’t even have enough energy to deal with the Sunday Scaries. The next 3 weeks at work are going to be shitcraycray bananas to put it nicely. I also have 6 flights in the next 3 weeks. Heading out to lovely Northbrook, Illinois the next two weeks back to back for the crazy part of a project – testing testing and more testing. And then we launch the next big release for the website I currently manage. Oh, and of course the launch date is when I am on vacation in Disney World with my family. Ah, the joys of Corporate America. Luckily I’ve been preparing for this since I was just a wee young’n in my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle fanny pack walking around the Magic Kingdom, while Skip was taking conference calls from a pay-phone outside of Splash Mountain. (my favorite consulting story to tell). So now I’ll be in a hotel room in Disney, 20 years later, drinking the consulting koolaid, launching a website at 1am on vacation. Some things never change.