I have been on a fund raising mission these last couple of weeks as I put myself up to ride for an hour in a spinnathon for Harrison’s Fund where we were to take on the Alps… just in the comfort of a marquee tent on a spinning bike in Oxshott! There were to be eight teams riding for 12 hours, each person riding an hour before tagging in their team mate to carry on up the mountain.
I’ve previously mentioned about Harrison’s Fund, a charity that was set up by my brother after his son was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy a couple of years ago. Seeing as I am an avid ‘spinner’ I thought taking on the challenge was a no brainer and I joined the Harrison’s Fund Rideathon Team.
I started my online fund raising but I also thought that with a lot of hungry riders on the day, it would be a good chance to bake something that I could sell on the day.
Alex, my brother munching on a cookie!
Bananas are always the athletes’ choice of fruit providing much needed vitamins and nutrients to help boost muscle performance and aid in muscle recovery. They also have the added benefit of containing potassium which prevents muscle cramps and carbohydrates which supply much needed fuel to your muscles.
More importantly though, I needed to bake something that people would want to buy so they needed to be tasty!
I was looking up ‘healthy’ cookie recipes that kept bringing up results saying you just need three ingredients; bananas, walnuts and oats. And whilst these did look healthy, to be honest, I wanted something that was more along the lines of a Millie’s cookie.
I think often with cookie recipes they are more like a biscuit rather than producing that really soft cake-like texture that makes a Millie’s cookie so darn good!
After a lot of time reading different cookie recipes, I came across a Banana-Walnut Chocolate Chunk Cookie recipe by Martha Stewart which bakers’ reviews described as producing cookies that were cake like and totally awesome. My search was over.
The night before the rideathon, with the hubbie off on an ‘away-day’ with work and a bowl of very very ripe bananas (to help concentrate the banana flavour in the cookies) at the ready…the baking began.
To be honest, it’s a very easy recipe to whip together and your only real challenge isn’t gobbling up a load of cookies straight from the oven… a challenge which I massively failed on having eaten four in the space of 30 minutes! Baker’s benefit though.
They were crumbly moist gooey chocolatey heaven.
I might have got a little carried away with the chocolate to be honest, which is why some were a little dark as I think there may have been more chocolate than dough in some cookies! But, I wasn’t complaining.
What I would say though is that I probably should have left them to cool a lot longer before stacking them up as they were a little stuck together, but I needed to get my sleep.
If you are looking for a cookie that competes and in my opinion might just beat a Millie’s cookie then this could be just what you’ve been looking for.
This was a winning way to raise some money and hopefully in my case, I’ll have raised a few more pounds for Harrison’s Fund and we’ll find that cure one day.
Banana-Walnut Chocolate Oat Cookies
Makes about 30 cookies
125g cup all-purpose flour
75g whole-wheat flour
1 tsp coarse salt
½ tsp baking soda
160g softened unsalted butter
100g granulated sugar
100g light-brown sugar
1 large egg
1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extra
2 medium ripe mashed bananas
90g rolled oats
150g dark chocolate chunks coarsely chopped
60g coarsely chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 190°C.
Whisk together the flours, salt and baking soda in a small bowl and set aside.
Put the butter and sugars into a bowl and beat together until pale and fluffy.
Add the egg and vanilla until just combined. Stir through the oats, chocolate chunks and walnuts.
Drop ½ inch balls of dough onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper, leaving about 2 inch spaces between each one.
Bake the cookies for about 12-13 minutes.
Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.
The cookies can be stored in an airtight containers for 2-3 days… although I can’t imagine there is any chance they will last that long!