Here’s what I said about this recipe back in 2012:
I’ve never been a fan of any kind of raisin dessert or dish. And until today I’ve never really been able to figure out why, though the answer is simple: it’s a texture thing. There are certain textures I can’t stomach: stringy celery (yuck), cold lettuce on warm sandwiches, overcooked asparagus and shriveled raisins.
Then I stumbled upon a blog that called for raisins soaked in rum and I became intrigued. (What’s not to love about alcohol soaked food?) When you soak raisins in anything they plump which completely changes the texture. (In my opinion, it makes the texture more palatable.)
After having tried this cookie, my raisin aversion has officially ended. (So long as I hydrate my raisins before eating them, that is.)
I’m not as opposed to raisins as I was seven years ago but I still don’t love them. I can tolerate golden raisins in cookies as long as it’s a really good recipe (like my Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookie adapted from the recipe found at Smitten Kitchen).
The first time I made this recipe I made it with macadamia nuts and white chocolate. This go-round I used toasted pecans instead of macadamia nuts and omitted the white chocolate chips after I discovered (after I made the cookie dough) that I had no white chocolate chips on hand. This is only surprising because I have about 15 packages of chocolate chips in my kitchen and a variety of flavors. This is not totally surprising because I do not love white chocolate.
Anyhow I do like the updated version a lot. I think I like the toasted pecans in place of the macadamia nuts and because I don’t love the combination of chocolate and fruit, I think this simplified version is the better version.
- ½ c. dark or spiced rum or whiskey
- 1 c. golden raisins
- ½ c. butter, softened
- ½ c. vegetable shortening or margarine
- 1 c. brown sugar, firmly packed
- ½ c. sugar
- 2 whole eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 c. all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 3 c. old-fashioned oats
- 1 c. chopped nuts (macadamia or toasted pecans)
- 1 c. white chocolate chips (optional)
- Soak the raisins in hot rum or whiskey for at least 30 to 45 minutes, the longer the better. (I soaked mine for over eight hours.) If the rum or whiskey doesn’t cover the raisins add warm water.
- In a small bowl, combine the flour with the baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
- Cream together the butter and the sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each one. Add in vanilla. Gradually add in the flour mixture, a little at a time. Don’t over mix.
- Chop or crush the nuts. Stir in oats, raisins, nuts and white chocolate chips (if using). Place spoonfuls onto a prepared baking pan and mound or roll into a ball. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes. Cool completely on the cookie sheet.
In 2012 I opted to soak my raisins in whiskey as opposed to rum, as I had only a few tablespoons of rum in my cupboard and a much larger amount of whiskey, or so I thought. I didn’t have *quite* enough whiskey to cover the raisins for soaking. So I added the remaining amount of rum in the cupboard.
In 2019 I soaked my raisins in Amaretto because that’s about the only thing I have on hand aside from Cherry-flavored Bailey’s.
In 2012 I didn’t have white chocolate chips on hand, but what I did have was white chocolate melty (which melts way better than white chocolate chips). To be honest, I’m not sure what’s in white chocolate melty, but I figured whatever it is is good enough. White chocolate melties are ‘wafers’ of chocolate in the shape of tiny discs or humongous white chocolate chips. I used a chopper to break them down into smaller bits.
In 2019 I was forced to omit the chocolate chips altogether.
Out of laziness, most times I crush my nuts with a meat cleaver (the flat side) instead of using a chopper because it takes so much effort (in my opinion) to put my chopper together. I find crushing the nuts works rather well but sometimes you’ll inadvertently end up with big chunks of nuts.
I recommend cooling the cookies completely on the cookie sheet mainly because I don’t like that a cooling rack leaves indentations on the bottom of the cookies. Call me crazy!