Nothing gets me in the fall mood like baking with apples. Pumpkin and spice is nice, but come September (my birthday month!) it’s all about the apples in my bakeshop. Several years ago I decided that I wanted to incorporate apples into a hearty spiced cookie. My experiment started by simply tossing some finely chopped apples into my go-to brown sugar cookie dough. The resulting cookies were delicious but spread way to much during baking. Flat cookies are a no go for me. I surmised that all of the added moisture from the apples made the dough far too wet, and when the apples baked the juices that they released made the finished cookies thin and messy.
I went back to brainstorming and thought to try adding apples to my Pennsylvania Dutch Chocolate Chip Cookie dough, which has half the amount of butter as your average cookie recipe. I made the dutch dough, minus the chips and added some apple bits that I had tossed with spice. Delicious! I wanted more flavor and texture, so I decided to make a simple cobbler to coat the cookie dough before baking.
I also figured that the low moisture content of the dough would allow for the addition of apple sauce, but opted for apple butter since I had a fresh supply on hand. The apple butter added a new flavor dimension from the cloves it contained. I also used apple butter as the ‘liquid’ in the cobbler to bind the ingredients together.
When the test cookies were cool enough to devour, which I did, I knew that I had hit the jackpot. Give these a try and I’m sure that they will become your new fall favorite.
A couple of notes:
*Chilling the dough does keep the cookies from spreading excessively while baking, but don’t allow the dough to chill overnight as the apples will oxidize and become soggy.
*These cookies will be crispy the day that they are baked. When stored in a container the moisture from the apples will cause the cobbler to soften, resulting in a delicate cake-like cookie. YUM!
*When baking most cookies (sugar, chocolate chip,) I prefer to take them out of the oven when the edges are just browned and the centers are still soft as I want a chewier cookie. These cookies can stand to be baked for a few minutes longer, since the apples contain so much moisture. Now on to the goods!
- 4 ounces (1 stick) softened unsalted butter
- ¾ cup brown sugar- 150 grams
- 1 cup white sugar- 200 grams
- ¼ cup apple butter
- 2 eggs, at room temp
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 2½ cups all purpose flour- 330 grams
- 6 tablespoons oats- 45 grams
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1¼ cups tart apples, peeled and chopped into small pieces
- 1 cup oats
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2-3 tablespoons apple butter
- Prepare the cookie dough
- In a bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Set aside
- In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter for one minute
- Add the white sugar and brown sugar to the butter and cream until smooth and sandy, about 1-2 minutes
- Scrape down your bowl
- To the creamed mixture, add the apple butter, the vanilla and one of the eggs. Cream until smooth
- Scrape the bowl/beater and add the second egg, beating until combined
- Add the dry ingredients and the chopped apples to the mixer bowl and blend on low to combine
- Give the dough one final mix by hand then cover the bowl and chill the dough for 1 hour
- Prepare the cobbler
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the oats, brown sugar and cinnamon
- Add 2 tablespoons of apple butter and mix until crumbly
- If the mixture looks dry add the remaining tablespoon of apple butter
- PREHEAT your oven to 350*F while you portion the cookie dough
- Once the dough has chilled, using either a spoon or cookie scoop, portion rounded tablespoons of dough into the cobbler, about 3 or 4 portions at a time
- Roll the dough in the cobbler to generously coat each ball. Repeat with the remaining dough, placing the cookies on a parchment lined baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Do not flatten the dough balls
- Bake the cookies in your preheated 350*F oven for about 12-16 minutes, until they are browned and no longer look wet in the center. Allow them to cool on the cookie sheet