I have officially renamed "no-bakes" as "boiled cookies"..........true, you don't bake them but you DO boil the mixture. I think they should aptly be named "BOILED COOKIES". Anyway, no-bakes are one of those cookies that you make and then you start picking at them as they start to harden (at least I do). Right after you finish dropping all of them you go back to the first one you dropped and then you run your index finger through it and pick up the gloopy mess and have your first taste and then you finish running your finger through it until the parchment paper is clean in that spot. You then start to clean up your mess and then GO BACK to the cookies (the 2nd one you dropped onto the paper) and you check that to see how hardened it is......still a little gloopy but you then pick it up in gloopy pieces with your index finger and thumb, finishing it off of course. You then proceed to put one of your kids to bed (takes about 15 minutes)......you come back down and see they are pretty hard so since you have already had 2, you decide to pick out a small one toward the middle on the left.......it peels right off the paper but is not super hard (this is my favorite time, when they are hard but they are still really smoooooth). You proceed to eat that one and then walk away and sweep the floor, clean out the cat box etc. You go back and decide that one more SMALL one won't kill you.........you find another small one on the bottom row toward the right......it peels off purrrrfectly and you eat that one also. You then proceed to move all the cookies upward filling in where you took cookies so it doesn't look as though you actually ate 4 cookies. You go and fold some laundry........thinking to yourself.....eeeck, I don't feel so good, I am full, BLAH and you walk back realizing you just ate 4 NO BAKES, you SHOULD be sick and ashamed. No bakes are always one of those cookies that you end up saying to yourself later on in the day.........sheeeesh, I shouldn't have eaten that last no bake.
Anyway, my recipe for no-bakes differs a little bit from the average recipe that is why I am renaming them boiled cookies. The espresso powder gives the cocoa powder a deeper flavor and the mexican vanilla is great to use with anything chocolate. The old fashioned oats instead of instant oats give the cookie a bit of a chewier texture instead of the eventual crumbly texture of the original no bake.....they don't get as dried out.
2 cups white granulated sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (I use Scharffenberger)
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup milk (full fat)
1 pinch salt
1 tsp of espresso powder or instant coffee
3 cups old fashioned oats (not instant)
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 teaspoon mexican vanilla extract (neilsen massey)
In a saucepan bring sugar, cocoa, butter, milk, espresso powder and salt to a rapid boil for 1 minute.
Add old fashioned oats, cruncy peanut butter, and mexican vanilla; mix well.
Working quickly, drop by teaspoonfuls onto waxed paper, and let cool.