When I was in college there was a student in several of my creative writing classes who was, well, eccentric. Among several oddities that I won’t bother to list, he wore a Civil-War style confederate uniform jacket whenever he had writers block.
You know what? Call me immature, but I mocked him with my friends because, well, it was funny. But let me tell you, I wish I had one of those jackets right now because for some reason, whenever I sit down at my computer I can’t make my fingers dance across the keys to produce words, but rather I start searching for the Facebook photo album of a friend I haven’t talked to in ten years, or I automatically open my Google reader for the tenth time in an hour to see what Lisa and Angie have shared today.
While I can blame my writers block for my lack of posting, there is also that issue of finding time to blog. I’m a believer that no matter how busy we are, we can usually make time to do the things we want to do (yes, I’m saying this as a person without children). And despite what has been a pretty packed schedule since I moved to Chicago I have managed to find the time to do a little cooking.
Because why bother cooking when you can eat baked goods for dinner?
This past weekend I attended an oatmeal festival with a client for work and part of the festival included an oatmeal baking contest. Let’s just say I couldn’t NOT bake with oatmeal when I came home. Being that the gym is still packed with New Years resolutioners and everyone is still all healthy-healthy, it seemed logical that I should make something low in fat.
Low-Fat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated white sugar
4 egg whites
2 tablespoons skim milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups of old-fashioned oats
1 3/4 cups whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine the oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar, egg whites, milk, vanilla and salt. Beat with an electric mixer (or paddle attachment of your stand mixer) on medium speed until the mixture resembles caramel sauce and the sugars have dissolved.
2. In a separate bowl, combine old-fashioned oats, flour, baking soda and chocolate chips. Stir until just combined. Add to liquid mixture. Transfer to a lightly greased 13×9 inch baking pan.
3. Bake 15-20 minutes until golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool until firm. Cut into squares and store tightly covered for up to 5 days.