Thursday, June 07, 2018

Big Heart Cookies

Until I received a lovely thank you note this week, I had forgotten about baking oversized heart cookies while I was visiting my daughter in LA. Originally we were going to my nephew and niece's home for dinner but their kids came down with the crud, so we met my nephew at a restaurant instead. Since we had already baked the cookies, we brought them along and he took them home to share.

You can make these cookies as one huge circle cookie in a pizza pan, or you can shape it into other shapes. One time I made a football shaped cookie for a football party. The batter does spread a bit, so for the hearts I shaped them sort of long and skinny. You can also make them personal by adding your favorite kinds of chips and decorations. I bet this would be delicious with peanut butter chips and Reese's Pieces decorations, for example. At Christmas you could use mint chips and press crushed peppermint candies to put on top after you drizzle on some plain white icing. Get creative!

If you really just want regular sized cookies, these work fine for that, too. Really, it's a great cookie batter and perfect for a party. I first posted these in 2007 (where you can see the football cookie), but they are too good not to make often. Below is a photo of the cookies raw, ready to bake.

Big Heart Cookies

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup brown sugar, light or dark, packed
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 large eggs
½ cup quick rolled oats
2 cups (12-oz. package) semi-sweet chocolate chips
½ cup chopped nuts (I left out the nuts, but added 1/2 cup dried cranberries)

For circle or heart shaped cookie:
1 cup M & M candies in appropriate colors
1 cup confectioners sugar
2 tablespoons hot milk
Assorted cake decorations such as dragees, colored sugar, colored small shapes, chopped nuts

Combine flour, salt and baking soda in a small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl and beat until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape bowl and beaters. Gradually beat in flour and beat until mixed. Beat in oatmeal. Mixture will be stiff. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.

Line a 12” pizza pan with foil. Spray with cooking spray. For a big circle cookie, put 2 cups of the dough on the foil. Using floured fingers, shape dough into desired shape, either circle or heart. Smaller hearts like the ones I made recently use 1/2 cup dough each. Exaggerate the shape since cookie will spread. You can fit two smaller hearts per pan. Sprinkle M&Ms over dough shape and pat lightly into dough.

Bake one sheet at a time in middle of oven for 10 - 18 minutes (depending on the size of the cookie) until golden brown. Let sit on sheet for 10 minutes, then slide shape on foil onto a cooling rack. Continue to bake the rest of the dough. You can make regular drop cookies with the remainder of the batter if desired.

Once the cookie has cooled, if you like you can decorate for a party! Mix the confectioners sugar and milk and drizzle over the cookie in a random pattern. While it is still wet, sprinkle cake decorations over as desired. The cookies are pretty with just the M& Ms, too.

Put decorated cookies on party platter and serve. Pieces can be broken off or you can cut it into portions. If it is for a birthday party, candles will stand up for a brief time; long enough to light them and sing Happy Birthday!

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