I often hear that necessity is the mother of invention. Sometimes necessity means having multiple days in a row craving a cookie you had in another city that you won't have again for months. It means driving to the closest grocery store straight from the gym and buying three boxes of cereal solely because you really need these cookies. It means breaking out your reserve stash of clearance mini-marshmallows that you have been hoarding for a few weeks trying to figure out the perfect thing to use them for. It means eating three cookies while in your now flour-speckled gym clothes, still dripping because the transition from elliptical to oven is not pretty.
These are based off cookies I had at Blackbird Pizzeria in Philadelphia. They started making their own sweets in house, and it was a great decision. I remember there being three kinds, and the chocolate coffee one almost swayed me but then I saw the Early Bird cookie next and never looked back. I may have eaten three or four in two days and I didn't regret it one bit. So this copycat is based off that cookie, but looking back at a picture I took, it doesn't seem to be a very close replica. Theirs is more of a classic cookie, and mine is basically an overloaded oatmeal cookies but it was still delicious.
Copycat Early Bird Cookies
makes 18 large cookies
1/4 cup hot water
1 tbl Ener-G powder
7 oz Earth Balance margarine
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
2 cup oats
3 cup assorted breakfast cereal, partially crushed
1 1/2 cup Dandies mini marshmallows
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine hot water and Ener-G powder, whisk well, and set aside to thicken. Cream Earth Balance and sugars. Add Ener-G eggs and vanilla. Mix until combined. Scrape sides of bowl and add flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Mix until dough forms. Fold in oats, breakfast cereal, and mini marshmallows. Beat until well incorporated. Using a 1/4 cup ice cream scoop, portion dough onto cookie trays. Flatten with your palm and bake for 18-20 minutes until the edges of the cookies are firm & golden. These will firm up a bit as they cool, but the centers of the cookies will stay soft & chewy.
I highly suggest crushing the cereal for this with your hands, a wooden spoon or by pulsing it lightly in a food processor. I have made these cookies three times now, and learned the hard way that this amount of dough with uncrushed cereal will cause your mixer to stall and you will end up with teary eyes thinking you have killed your KitchenAid. For the cereals I used a mixture of Captain Crunch, Apple Jacks and Cinnamon Toast Crunch but you can use whatever cereals you like best. If you use Fruit Loops or Fruity Pebbles, you might want to omit the cinnamon from the cookie dough because those flavors might clash a little.
While these cookies are holding me over for now, my to-bake is list is starting to get pretty long. It's Vegan MoFo which means it's my favorite time of the year! This month I don't have time to participate in the insanity but I am following along with everyone's progress very happily. Do you have a new favorite blog? What's your favorite theme?