Meeting Margaret Atwood + Oatmeal, Cranberry & White Chocolate Cookies

I have always wanted to meet Margaret Atwood.  Yesterday, my wonderful fiancé Jonathan made that possible!  He took me to her lecture at the University of Waterloo and I was in awe of how accomplished, well spoken, and wonderful she is in person.

When Jonathan and I first started to become close friends he was living in Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood.  I always joked with him how maybe walking down the street we might meet her (Ms. Atwood lives in the Annex).  In fact, “The Year of the Flood” was the first book that I lent to Jonathan.  He took great care of the book and returned it to me in perfect condition – so I knew he was a keeper.

Ms. Atwood gave her lecture yesterday as part of the 2012 Congress of the Humanities & Social Sciences, one of North America’s largest academic gatherings.  She outlined her history as an author starting out, but then moved forward to discuss how narrative is an innate human quality.  Then she explained how powerful narrative can be, and how in the digital age more people are self-publishing and writing.  Narrative of course can be political – the stories we tell our children and ourselves about power, empathy and justice have an impact.  Ms. Atwood truly is an advocate for a just society with transparent government – a society that cares about its fellow citizens.  The ability to think beyond ourselves – that is our strength as human beings.  Margaret Atwood is a phenomenal woman, who actively voices her opinions and works towards a better society.  For these reasons I admire her greatly.

When it came to looking for a recipe – I wanted to make something that was elegant, complex and delicious – just like Margaret Atwood’s writing.  The result was oatmeal, cranberry, white chocolate cookies. There are many variations on oatmeal cookies, but these are truly a winner.  These cookies would also be wonderful with the Margaret Atwood blend coffee from Balzac’s.  Enjoy!

Oatmeal, Cranberry, White Chocolate Cookies

1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup dried cranberries

1 cup white chocolate chips

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.  In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, rolled oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon, set aside.

3.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip together butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar until light and fluffy about 3-4 minutes.

4.  Stir in eggs one at a time and vanilla extract.

5.  Add in flour mixture and mix until incorporated.

6.  Add in dried cranberries, white chocolate chips.

7.  Roll cookie dough into balls, about 2 tbsp per ball, and drop onto buttered cookie sheets.

8.  Bake 9 – 10 minutes until lightly golden.

9.  Cool several minutes on cookie sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool.  Store cookies in an airtight container.

10.  Enjoy!