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I make Chocolate Chip Oatmeal cookies on a regular basis.

Unfortunately, I can never follow a recipe - one of my major faults! I always have to change something! A little more of this or a little less of that... And as a whole, my deletions and additions are successful, edible and on occasion, very enjoyable! :-)

What I'm attempting to say is that you don't have to restrict your creativity. If you like raisins or nuts, add them. The major difference will be in the length of time and temperature at which the cookies need to be baked.

Raisins are susceptible to burning, so lowering the temperature by 15-25°F is probably a good idea. This could extend the length of time it takes to bake the cookies. Coconut is another ingredient that burns easily.

The last batch of cookies I baked, I added raisins, peanut butter, nuts and coconut, baking them for 15 minutes at 325°F in a gas oven. Fortunately, they were delicious. I had to cut the amount of butter used in the recipe by 1/4 because of the addition of the peanut butter. Otherwise, the recipe was unchanged.

Start a new family tradition by trying something different and make the recipe your own.

Ummm, I don't recommend you attempt drastic changes if you're cooking for company. That's when "Murphy's Law" kicks in and creativity usually gives way to error!

Happy Baking!

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