Just like a puppy, a cranberry is for life you know, not just for Christmas! I had bought a bag of dried Cranberries in December but had forgotten about them until I did a clearout last week - their ruby squidginess makes them a great baking ingredient & I've seen them paired with orange before. I always like to go one step further and decided to add chocolate to the mix. Everybody loves chocolate cookies so I knew they would be a hit.
The trick with this recipe is to chill, chill and chill the dough again because it stops the raw dough spreading into an unseemly mass in the oven, rather than pristine cookies. I actually stick my dough in the freezer for about 25 minutes to make it as cold as possible, and repeat this with the leftover dough while the first batch is in the oven. I made the whole lot in my trusty Kenwood Chef using the K beater, and my new super duper Salter scales. If you saw what I've been using for scales until now, you'd laugh your head off...
This quantity makes exactly 36 large cookies. Bake them 9 to a sheet otherwise they'll run into each other. Trust me...
Cranberry Chocolate Orange Cookies
225g Butter, well softened
350g Caster Sugar
1 tsp Orange Oil/Extract
350g Plain Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
100g Dried Cranberries, roughly chopped
Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
Now add the eggs, one at a time, and the orange oil.
Add the dry ingredients - flour, baking powder, salt & cocoa - and mix very well.
Finally add the chopped cranberries and mix again.
Transfer the mixture in two batches to sheets of clingfilm. Wrap, flatten & stick in the freezer for 25 minutes.
Now preheat your oven to 170c/Gas Mark 4 & line two large baking sheets with baking paper.
Remove the dough from the freezer & unwrap. Lay another sheet of clingfilm on top of the dough & roll out until about 1cm thick. Cut out using a cookie cutter into whatever shape you want, and place on the lined baking sheet, leaving a 3-4cm gap. Place baking sheet into the fridge for 10 minutes to allow the cookies to chill again. Wrap the remaining dough & put back into the freezer for Round 2
Bake for 10-12 minutes, allow to cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheets before transferring to cooling racks.
Repeat the process with the rest of the dough.