Monday, December 22, 2008

Kris Kringle Cookies

I don't like to post recipes that I haven't personally made for two reasons. First, sometimes a recipe looks good on paper, but once you make it, it needs tweaking or isn't good. I like to explore first and taste it for myself before I pass the recipe on. That way I can give tips on substitutions, or a review of the taste. Second, blog posts are just more fun with pictures! If I haven't made the recipe, I'm not going to have pictures to show you the process and finished product, which I feel add to the post.

This year, things have been hectic with work, family, loads of snow and ice, negative temperatures, difficult commutes, shoveling, Christmas cards, mailing presents, and travel plans. Four wheeling it to the grocery store to pick up cookie supplies was pretty low on my list. I also have considerably less people this year to bake for, versus last year. Sadly, I ended up omitting the baking part of Christmas presents this year.

If I had made cookies this year, these are the ones I would have made, so I'm sharing them with you anyways! I made them last year and they are fantastic! The batch is HUGE - yields 72, so you can easily divide them up amongst several recipients and they look very Christmassy and festive. Last year I made two batches and split them up between my work and Johnny's closest co-workers. I think 6 people total, plus some for us to eat ourselves! We heard nothing but good reviews, even had some requests to pass on the recipe - something I always consider a compliment.

Big Batch Kris Kringle Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 (6 oz.) pkgs Baker's white baking chocolate, chopped
2 cups chopped pecans, toasted
2 cups dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Beat butter and sugars in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Blend in eggs and vanilla. Add flour, baking soda and salt; mix well. Stir in chocolate, pecans and cranberries. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls, 1-1/2 inches apart, onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake 9 to 11 min. or until lightly browned. Cool 3 min.; remove to wire racks. Cool completely. Store in tightly covered container at room temperature.

Yield: 72 servings

Like I said, I haven't made them since last year, so a lot isn't fresh in my memory. But, I do remember using white chocolate chips instead of chopped baker's chocolate. I vaguely remember cheating and just buying Fischer's pre-chopped pecans, too! Oh! And, I accidentally bought Craisins, the sweetened cranberries so the cookies had an extra layer of sweet. I found it to be a nice edition, but I think you're technically supposed to use plain, unsweetened dried cranberries.

Merry Christmas!

This is Johnny (aka Santa) and me (his elf) at one of work's three Christmas party events we did for the kids!

We'll be spending Wednesday with Johnny's family, who celebrates on Christmas Eve. This is pretty foreign to me, but it works out well since my family celebrates on Christmas Day. No battles over which house to spend Christmas at - they each traditionally celebrate separate days! This will be our third year of flying to see my family very early Christmas morning. This year Christmas is at my grandparents' house in Florida, instead of my parents' house in North Carolina! I'm looking forward to 80° weather so I can defrost! Then it's up to a mild North Carolina for a few days to see friends and my Dad's mom, Grammy, before heading back to the frozen tundra of Chicagoland.

I hope everybody has a wonderful, blessed Christmas with their family and friends. Stay safe and eat wonderful food!

No comments: