Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

From Scratch: Baking is a precise science

In my business, people are always asking us “how do you get your cakes…cookies… always look, taste so good and consistent?”

In my business, people are always asking us “how do you get your cakes…cookies… breads…to always look, taste so good and consistent?” My answer is always the same… “weigh your ingredients!”

I often get a perplexed look so I go and fetch the scale. I love it when someone tells me that they took the advice and made the best cookies ever, which is why I am writing this article.

In baking, precision is a must. Any changes in a baked item recipe will create unwanted results. Too dark? Baked too long or your oven is too hot. Flat? Most likely not enough flour and/or too much butter. Too light in colour? Too much flour or not baked enough.

Number one rule — weigh don’t measure. By changing up to this method, you will be faster and your end result will be perfect. Here are some shortcuts to know:

1 cup all-purpose flour = 150 g

1 cup packed brown sugar = 250 g

1 cup butter = 225 g

1 tsp salt = 6 g

1 tsp baking soda = 5 g

1 cup granulated sugar = 205 g

1 tsp baking powder = 4 g

The following recipe is fabulous – follow the weights and you will have what I think is the near-perfect cookie.


Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

(Copyright from Bill Granger’s Bills Food Cookbook — one of my favourite Aussie chefs!)

Makes about 30 cookies.


150 g unsalted butter, softened

230 g soft brown sugar

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 teaspoons vanilla extract — yes, measure this one!

125 g all-purpose flour

4 g baking powder

a pinch of salt

235 g rolled oats

175 g chocolate chips


• Preheat your oven to 350 C. Line three large baking trays with parchment paper.

• Cream the butter and the sugar together in a bowl till fluffy and smooth. Add the egg and vanilla; beat until smooth. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl and mix lightly. Add the oats and chocolate chips. Stir to combine.

• Roll tablespoons of the mixture into balls and place on baking trays. Flatten the balls with a fork dipped in flour. Bake the cookies for 20 minutes or until a pale golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool on the trays for five minutes then transfer to a cooling rack for an additional 30 minutes.

Lara McCormack is one of the owners of From Scratch — A Mountain Kitchen in Fairmont Hot Springs where one can savour great seasonal food, sip from a selection of beverages including B.C. wines and enjoy the views of our gorgeous valley landscape.

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