Pumpkin Oatmeal White Chocolate Chip Cookies and my 2-year Blog Anniversary!

Don’t forget to enter my giveaway! See below! This giveaway is now closed. The winner is Rissa, the first commenter! She says: “Karen, I love reading and you crack me up! I will first use my silpat mat to make all of my friends and neighbors terribly jealous by flaunting it in front of them shamelessly…and then I will bake these cookies!” Congrats Rissa!!


Two years ago today I published my first blog post on this little site. I wrote about these Pumpkin Oatmeal White Chocolate Chip Cookies, and about how I brought a plate over to my neighbor and he answered the door with nothing but a towel on. (What can I say, these cookies just bring out the best in people. Or maybe the worst?)

I thought hard about starting a food blog. Too hard. For weeks. It sounded like an awful lot of work, plus there was the fact that I had no photography skills whatsoever. It was impossible. So I decided not to do it. Not worth the time investment and the hassle.


But then I changed my mind. On October 4th, apparently. I remember pretty much thinking, “Why not. What the heck.” I had stressed previously about what title I would give it, but then I decided not to care and went with the first name that popped into my head: The Food Charlatan. Because I seriously have no idea what I’m doing; I’m a quack.

Yet here I am, 2 years later, posting away. I love this little food blog. Sometimes it loves me back. Sometimes it kicks me in the butt. (Don’t worry, most of the time we are friends.)


What I love most is you, though. Now don’t worry, I’m not going to get all sappy on you, but really, this blog would be totally lame if you didn’t read it. I wouldn’t be writing it if I didn’t think anyone would read it. (L’art pour l’art? Nah. :) Thank you for all the comments, emails, and support.

Now it’s time for some pay back! I’m doing a fun little giveaway to celebrate my 2 year anniversary. The lucky winner will receive a Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mat:

Woohoo! I love my Silpat. I recently (okay, it was today) ruined a batch of cookies (okay, these ones). They spread out so terribly in the oven, they looked like soup. But instead of having to spend an hour scraping them off the pan…I used a spatula to easily lift that ugly mess off of my beautiful silpat. (I realized later that the reason for my cookie fail was because I forgot to add the bowl of dry ingredients that I had mixed together. Like, you know, the flour and stuff. Just forgot. Yeah…it’s been one of those days.)

Anyway, the point is, you could OWN one of these beautiful mats if you win. All you have to do is:

1) be awesome (check)

2) leave a comment on this post saying what you will use your Silpat for first!

3) Like my Facebook page if you haven’t already

4) follow me on Pinterest if you haven’t already

And that’s it! I will choose the winner (using Random.org) on Tuesday, October 8th, at 9pm PDT. I will contact the winner via email, and if I don’t get a response within 48 hours I will select another winner. No international entries, sorry. This giveaway is now closed.

IMG_6888So, these cookies. I made these 2 years ago because I was obsessed with Paradise Cafe’s Pumpkin Oatmeal White Chocolate Chip Cookies. They were huge, and puffy, and not cakey, just chewy and fall and delicious. I recreated them and that was my first recipe on this blog. Here’s the picture:

IMG_0544I still wouldn’t say I’m a fabulous photographer, but I see at least a leeeeetle bit of improvement.

I made them again a few days ago, and either I made them wrong or I have become a huge cookie snob over the last 2 years. (I’m pretty sure it’s the latter…) So I majorly revamped the recipe and am presenting it to you again. It really is way better. This cookie is not cakey, but it is not even close to being crispy. Just deliciously chewy. Perfect cookie texture, with that amazing pumpkin flavor. I love fall!!!

I’m going to make you click over for the recipe (sorry!) because it’s important to me to preserve my old blog posts. A blog is a journey, they say, and I don’t want to delete my first post (for posterity’s sake, you know.) And I don’t want to have 2 versions of a recipe on my site.

Enjoy your weekend everybody! Happy Fall! Good luck!

Click here for the recipe.IMG_6842





  1. Rissa says

    Karen, I love reading and you crack me up! I will first use my silpat mat to make all of my friends and neighbors terribly jealous by flaunting it in front of them shamelessly…and then I will bake these cookies!

  2. Misty says

    Ooh I will use it for Christmas first! I don’t know how or why I have never had one of these! These would make cookies with caramel or marshmallow way easier to work with!

  3. Jane Mead says

    I will be using my newly won SILPAT to make your Pumpkin Oatmeal White Chocolate Cookies! I know they will be just as wonderful and tasty as they look on your blog! I just love readying the fun stuff you post as I feel part of your family! You make my day when I read what you do!

    Keep it up…….I’ll be reading!

  4. Sarah says

    I should admit that I already own a Silpat, and that I love no cooking implement more than I love it. Seriously. My sister gave it to me for my birthday and I use it almost every day of the week. I have probably texted her 12+ times to tell her how much I adore it. So, that being said, if I were the winner I would give it to her as a benevolent gift, because it’s just not right to keep all that awesomeness to myself! (Anything that makes you feel more French in the kitchen is also a plus IMO, and that thing’s got “made in France” stamped right on it! For all to admire!) These cookies look great. Perfect to eat with apple cider.

  5. Kelly says

    I could tell you what I WON’T do with a new Silpat, and that’s try to make oven-candied basil leaves. Dav and I were playing “Chopped” with Ryan as a judge (baby carrots, basil, cheese, and eggs were the secret ingredients for dessert), and I decided last minute to make some freshly candied basil leaves to garnish my dish by coating the basil in brown sugar, and then melting the sugar in a super-hot oven. Basil catches ON FIRE, by the way. And also, my Silpat amazingly survived. It’s a bit less non-stick, but still much better than nothing. Those things are almost indestructible. But yeah, don’t light stuff on fire on top of them.

  6. Katrinka says

    I will use my Silpat to make these cookies that sound so delicioso! Seriously, you make me want to cook more.

  7. Jessi Olson says

    Karen, I love your blog. It makes me happy. I would use my new silpat to make chocolate chip cookies – I finally found out what I have been doing wrong to make them cakey instead of buttery gooey deliciousness.

  8. Aramie Christopherson says

    Hi Karen,
    I just discovered your blog through my friend Sarah. If I win the Silpat I will use it to make mummy sugar cookies for Halloween!

  9. Sandi says

    Silpats rock. Especially for mediocre cooks like myself. One less thing I have to worry about. I would try out these very cookies.

  10. says

    Sweet. As in I’d make some sweet persimmon cookies to fill my house with the smell of Christmas. By the by, I joined pinterest for the sole reason of entering this contest. I’ve avoided it for years. You win, Karen, you win. :D

  11. Bob says

    You definitely have great people and fantastic friends. I found you through my sister-n-law. I love to cook. I always have. I love to cook meals, but to be honest, junk food is my cancer. From brownies to cookies. My favorite cookie is definitely a chocolate chocolate chip cookie. That is my first recipe I will see if you have. If not, I hope it will be your next. I could always use any tips or helps you can add, will definitely be appreciated. Thanks.

  12. Lara says

    Ohh la la! I would use my beloved silpat to cook one of your scrumptious cookie recipes. Maybe this very one! I would also wear a French maid outfit while speaking with an accent to complete the french cooking experience. Vive la France!

  13. amber says

    i love reading your posts so i can hear whats new with you since we live soooo far away. Plus, I figure if you like what you make I will too! I would use it for roasting vegetables and of course sooner than later cookies would be made as well. :) you really have done a great job with this blog!

  14. Janice says

    Silpat- one of the best inventions ever! I used mine for chicken roll-ups the other day, so perfect :)

    And I want to thank you for starting your blog, it has really reminded me how much I enjoy cooking – after years of ‘having’ to cook, I’m loving it again!

  15. Esther says

    I would put the Silpat on a cookie sheet first, just say’n. Next I’d bake some cookies on it. I’m not sure what kind yet. Maybe I’ll use my conjoined twins cookie cutter to make some sugar cookies for Halloween.

  16. Sha Lene says

    A Silpat?! Would this give me better cookies? Better than parchment paper? Think I would love to try this. Would prob save me lots of money since I don’t own stock in parchment

  17. Jessica Officer says

    I love your blog Karen! It always makes me laugh :) I’m a sucker for free stuff and I’ve been wanting a silpat for years now and I think it’s crazy that (as far as I know) my mom and sisters also do not own one! Crazy right?

  18. Kris says

    Hmmm. . . . I’m not sure what I will make . So much awesomness on your blog, it’s hard to choose! I already own a Silpat – which I love – and I’m using it for dinner tonight. Does that count? If I win, perhaps I will try your Gluten Free chocolate cookies. I’ve never made a gluten free anything, so I should give it a try.

    You know I love your blog. I love your recipes, but I love your stories even more. My all-time favorite is the one about Charlotte’s birthday, where Eric went home to get the cupcakes, made a sandwich and then promptly left without the cupcakes. (That is just so like him.) You make Joy and I laugh every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning and we appreciate that, considering there is not a lot to laugh about at Johnson Hardwork most days.

    BTW, I noticed on Pinterest that you have a “Small Space Organization” board. You don’t need that anymore! Woohoo!

  19. Erica says

    I’ve been making a better attempt this year to actually cook decent meals and occasionally fun treats too. All your amazing foods inspire me. I’ve been trying to come up with a festive fall idea, and I’ve never really been a pumpkin fan, so I was actually thinking of trying the cookies from this blog to give pumpkin another chance! …or maybe its first real chance in our house. :)

  20. says

    Congrats on the 2 years! You really have some great recipes on here and your pictures are great!

    Oh, Silpats. Yes, they are so nice! I have one already, but could always use another. I’ve actually really been wanting to try a jaconde cake (ever since I saw Jessica B post a pic on FB) so I’m pretty sure I’d use it for that first.

  21. says

    I’ve had a silpat mat on my Amazon wish list since roughly forever. If I won one, I would take that item off my wishlist. And then make chocolate chip cookies.


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