Monday, December 14, 2020

Chocolate Cranberry Cookies

Photo of Chocolate Drizzled Cranberry Cookies

I like baking with cranberries, and one of the best cookies I’ve ever eaten was an oatmeal, white chocolate, and dried cranberry cookie. Those came from a mix I had picked up at a gift shop, and I’m not really sure what make them so special. I’ve tried making similar recipes, and they just aren’t the same. They are missing something, but I am not sure what exactly.

These cookies are different, as they use fresh/frozen cranberries, but they sounded so good. They are also dairy free, as long as you use dairy free chocolate chips for the topping. I tend to bake with butter fairly exclusively, but there are times when shortening is the right ingredient. Shortening adds softness, and that is something that butter can’t add in the same way.

These cookies are quick, which is good as I was facing a time crunch when I was deciding which cookies to make. I didn’t really have time to refrigerate the dough, so these were simply mix and bake. I didn’t even chop the cranberries, and they baked up fine. I drizzled mine with chocolate, again as that saved some time. I really like the texture of these cookie, soft in the middle with a crisp edge texture, and the cranberries add a pop of tartness. These cookies remind me of something my grandmother used to make, and that’s always a good memory.

Chocolate-Dipped Cranberry Cookies
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
1 cup chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
Chopped nuts, if desired

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats.
In a large mixer bowl, beat the shortening and sugar on medium until light. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and stir to combine. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer running on low, gradually add the flour mixture. Dry the cranberries (if needed) and fold into the dough. 
Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet.

Bake for 11-13 minutes, until lightly browned. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before cooling completely on a wire baking rack.

In a small bowl, microwave the chocolate and shortening until melted and smooth. Dip each cookie halfway into the melted chocolate or drizzle on top of the cookies. If desired, sprinkle with chopped nuts. Allow the cookies to set before serving.

Recipe from Barbara Nowakowski, Taste of Home

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