These cookies are really doing it for me. They’re moist, nutty and chunky. When they’re warm, they overflow with dark chocolate. As soon as I claim I’ve had enough, I find myself reaching in for another…
I started thinking about trail mix a couple weeks back when Alex and I threw work aside, haphazardly packed the car with whatever gear we could find, and headed off to Mt. Shasta.
Mt. Shasta is a big ole volcano that stands high above its surrounding mountains. It’s a dramatic mountain. For those of you who care about these things, the summit rises to 14,162 ft. The base is at around 7,000 ft. We planned to hike up in a single day, leaving at 3 am and getting back whenever we did. Sound exhausting? It was. In all the mountains I’ve climbed, I’ve never ascended 7,000 ft vertical in a day. Let alone after coming from sea level the day before.
It was incredible! Gorgeous! But the altitude was beating us up. As we switchbacked up the hill, kicking steps into the snow with our crampons, I snorted down trail mix and chile-rubbed dried mango (thank you Trader Joe’s). I hoped that the calories would turn into magical wings and fly me up the hill. Eventually I gave up hope on the wings and started dreaming about trail mix cookies.
I was so spent by 13,000 ft that I fell asleep, crampons on my feet and an ice axe by my side. Not faking.
Thankfully, the decent was a blast! We plopped onto our tails at the top of the hill and zoomed down. When we got to the bottom I was simultaneously thrilled and totally deflated. The same pitch that we had started walking up in the dark, the same one we were still trekking up when the sun was high in the sky, crisping the underside of our noses, we butt-skied (official term: glissaded) in 10 minutes.
When we finally returned to the car we ate a couple tacos, drank a couple beers and fell asleep in our tent while the sun was still out. I slept without flinching for 12 hours straight, trail mix cookies dancing in my head.
Trail mix cookies! Mixed with dark chocolate and Good Old Raisins and Peanuts (the most traditional trail mix of all), they have a base of oats and whole wheat flour that’s not too sweet. It took me four tries to get the cookies just right, but I’m really happy with them now.
By batch four I was beginning to wonder what we were going to do with the backlog of cookies (I don’t have co-workers during the summer…). Thankfully our friend Jacob came over and put a significant dent in the cookie jar. He doesn’t seem like someone who would naturally gravitate toward a whole wheat cookie, so that made me feel like these will pass the test for anyone. I hope you like them, too! Next time we head to Shasta I’m going to make a big batch and use them to propel us up the hill. For now, I’m relying on them to help me pass the time in my desk chair. Woot woot!
Trail Mix Cookies
Loosely adapted from the whole wheat chocolate chip cookies in Good to the Grain
Makes 36 cookies
- 1 3/4 c (210 g) whole wheat flour (I use white whole wheat flavor, which has a milder flavor)
- 1 t baking soda
- 1 t baking powder
- 1 t fine sea salt
- 1 c butter (2 sticks)
- 1/2 c brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 c natural cane sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 2 c rolled oats
- 6 oz (170 g) dark chocolate, chopped (or you can use the hammer technique: I put the chocolate in a plastic bag and hit away)
- 3/4 c raisins, packed
- 1 c dry roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Mix well (a whisk works well).
In a separate bowl (or your stand mixer), cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, vanilla. Mix until well combined.
Add flour mixture, stir until just combined.
Add oats. Stir until combined.
Add chocolate, raisins and peanuts. Stir until combined.
On a cookie sheet, place dough in ball that are the size of approx 1 heaping tablespoon 2 – 3 inches apart. Cook for approximately 8-10 minutes, or until the edges are brown.
Let the cookies cool for a minute on the baking sheet, and then remove and let cool completely on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container.