Beyond the Bake Sale

Don't you just love it when you get a quick note from school about an upcoming bake sale … in less than two days? It's for a great cause and you always want to help out. You look through your pantry and, next thing you know it, you're letting one cookie sheet cool while you load the other one with cookie dough:

And then you realize you really like what you've made. And then you make another batch to keep at home while you package up the cooled ones — two by two — to put out on the bake sale table at the end of the week. Because once you've started making cookies, it seems like the easiest thing to just keep going, especially when what you're baking is loaded with chocolate, raisins, and dried figs:

If you don't have mini-chocolate chips, you can use the regular size. I like the little ones because you end up with what seems like a lot more chocolate in each bite without needing to add more chocolate. You can also use regular raisins instead of chocolate-covered ones, but I happened to have some on hand and really loved what it did for the cookies. And I know dried figs aren't a common pantry staple, so feel free to use chopped dates instead. The dried fruit and the plain yogurt mean you'll have tender cookies even a week after making these cookies … if they happen to last that long! And, while they managed to disappear quickly at the bake sale, they are also great treats to take along on a picnic, to a potluck, or any other fun summer gathering. And then you'll still be in practice for making them when fall rolls around and more bake sale notes start coming home from school!

Chocolate-Raisin-Fig Cookies

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet mini-chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup chocolate-covered raisins (or plain raisins)
  • 1 cup finely-chopped dry figs (or dates)

Preheat the oven to 350° F and line 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, with the paddle attachment fixed, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar. Mix on medium speed for 1 minute or until fluffy. Add each egg, one at a time, incorporating the first one fully before adding the second one. Add the vanilla extract and mix again to combine. Mix in the chocolate chips, chocolate-covered raisins, and figs by hand. Using a standard ice cream disher, form mounds of cookie dough and place them on the cookie sheets, evenly spacing them about 1 1/2 inches apart. Flatten them SLIGHTLY with the palm of your hand so they spread a bit more during baking. DO NOT PRESS THEM FLAT!

Bake the cookies for 15 minutes or until slightly browned around the edges. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 5 minutes before transferring the cookies to wire racks to cool the rest of the way.

  • Yields: 2 dozen 3-inch cookies
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour

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