A few things take these beyond the basic oatmeal cookie. One, a generous hand with the spices. Two, cherries instead of raisins and almond extract instead of vanilla. And three, a sprinkle of salt on top—it enhances the spices, cherries, and almond, and makes the still-comforting childhood favorite thoroughly modern.
Makes about 4 dozen cookies
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt (garden variety table or finely ground salt)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
- 4 cups rolled oats
- 1 1/2 cups dried cherries
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
- Flaked salt, for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, table salt, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
In the large bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, and brown sugar, beating until light and smooth. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. Add the almond extract. Gradually add the flour mixture and mix until just short of combined. With the mixer on medium-low, add the oats, cherries, and almonds, mixing until just combined.
Arrange 2 tablespoon-size balls of dough on two parchment-lined baking sheets, about 1 1/2 inches apart (use a 2-tablespoon ice cream scooper to make portioning easy). Lightly sprinkle the cookies with the flaked salt and bake until set and slightly golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes, turning halfway through. Remove to a rack and cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 10 minutes. Remove from the baking sheet and thoroughly cool before storing in an airtight container.
Repeat with the remaining dough.