Sunday, 23 December 2018

Cranberries In Cookies

If there's one thing that we, as humans, associate with holidays more than anything else, it's food. Turkey at Thanksgiving and Christmas, hot dogs and hamburgers during Canada Day and the Fourth of July, chocolcate on Valentine's Day - we have so many food options during the holidays and on observances that it's almost an automatic to expect good food when getting together with friends and family. The December holiday season often brings an abundance of food for us to devour with sweet treats being featured in the form of gingerbread, sugar cookies, and shortbread cookies. I, however, like the idea of a less-sweet treat, and while the cookies shown above have both sugar and chocolate chips, they feature a fruit not often found in your everyday cookies.

Cranberries are often harvested late in the fall, making them ideal to serve at both Thanksgiving and Christmas. In the old days, people would string them with popcorn to give one's Christmas tree a festive, colorful look. The popularity of the berry for its ability to remain fresh for weeks after a harvest gave rise to it being served with Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners as the tartness of the berry when made into sauce would often serve to cut the richness of meats such as goose, duck, and turkey as well as providing a savory garnish to serve with glazed ham.

While the recipe below calls for dried cranberries, the tartness of the cranberries still shines through in the cookie. I tend to like a less-sweet cookie on the whole as I don't have an extremely sweet tooth as it is, and with the white chocolate chips as part of the cookie they serve to look more festive than "anytime" cookies. Here's the recipe for Cranberry-White Chocolate Chip Cookies.


1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1½ cups light brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
¾ tsp salt
¼ tsp cinnamon
1½ cups dried cranberries, chopped
1 cup walnuts, chopped
¾ cup white chocolate chips


Preheat the over to 350F.

Cream the butter, sugars, eggs, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl by using an electric mixer on high speed. Make sure your butter is soft enough to not leave lumps of butter! If you have to, pop it in the microwave before mixing so that it's soft without having melted.

Mix the flour, oats, baking power, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in another bowl. Stir until dry ingredients are mixed well.

Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Note that this will make a very thick dough, so be prepared for a workout! Once mixed in, add the cranberries, walnuts, and chocolate chips until all three are evenly distributed throughout the dough.

Using a spoon and your fingers, make golf ball-sized balls of dough (or slightly smaller) with your hands, and place them approximately two inches apart on a lined baking sheet. Bake for 16-18 minutes until the edges of the cookies begin to brown. Remove from the oven, and allow them to cool for 15 minutes. This mixture will yield approximately two dozen cookies!

You'll notice that the outside of the cookie becomes hard. This is normal! The cookies themselves will develop this outer "shell", but the interior of the cookies will be soft. Store in airtight containers and freeze, or leave on the counter for up to two weeks (if they last that long).

As the Jets and Canucks battled, I made four dozen cookies for the family bake exchange, so there will be lots of these cookies to go around on Christmas morning. As I said above, they're not overly sweet when it comes to cookies, but there's still that cookie taste that one can't deny. If you want to make some unique cookies this holiday season, I find one can't go wrong with these!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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