It’s that time of year again – less than 6 weeks until Christmas! And while it takes me by surprise every year, this year is all the more jarring – how could 2021 go soooooo slooooowly, yet fly by? I’m still wrapping my head around 2020, and it’s nearly 2022??
Anyway, in light of having just over a month to organise the Christmas Chaos, AND an assignment to procrastinate, it’s the perfect time to test bake. I will, of course, be making my famous pfeffernusse, but I like to make something different, too. And these are delightful! The aroma of bashed pistachios is intoxicating, and the tart lemon icing and craisins make a great contrast for all the chocolatey, sweet delights available.
The only regret I have for these is that I made a small batch because I didn’t know how they’d go. I’ll keep the ratios as I made them, because my waist really doesn’t need double the amount, but trust me, double the quantity wouldn’t be unwelcome.
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1tbs orange juice
1.5 cups self raising flour
1 cup craisins, chopped
1/2 cup pistachios, crushed (I use a mortar and pestle, or a ziplock bag and a rolling pin).
1/4 cup butter
1 cup icing sugar
1tbs lemon juice
Preheat oven to 180°C. Prepare a silicone or other bake trays.
Cream butter and sugars until fluffy and pale.
Combine egg, milk and juice in a small bowl. Add to creamed butter mixture and continue to mix until incorporated.
Gently fold in flour until well combined. Add craisins and crushed nuts and mix.
Drop tablespoonfuls of the batter onto prepared tray, leaving about 5cm between cookies. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden brown.
Cool completely on wire racks.
Carefully melt butter for icing in the microwave. Cool for 5 minutes, them beat in the rest of the ingredients until smooth. Dip each cookie into the icing and allow to set.
I’ve had an urge to bake cookies this week – I think it’s the cold, rainy weather – far more than I’ve actually had an urge to eat cookies. Surely I’m not the only person that craves the cook more than the result sometimes? However, the result of this urge wasn’t exactly a hardship: chewy, soft cookies that are tart and just sweet enough. Better yet, the result was just that little bit different to a standard chocolate chip cookie (not that I would ever badmouth such a classic!), without being as indulgent as my Reeces snickerdoodles or blackforest cookies (neither of which have made it to my blog, but surely I won’t hold on you forever!), and therefore the perfect compromise.
At 130 calories per cookie, these are pretty standard in terms of your chocolate chip biscuit, which was reassuring, because some cookies hit double this without much increase in size or flavour, and really, you want your treats to be worth it. To me, I haven’t met a cookie worth nearly 300 calories, but I find 130 calories is easy to build into a reasonable day. And really, we’re all entitled to a little treat now and then. The more time I spend in this healthier lifestyle, the less I worry about numbers. It’s a liberating feeling, but I still like knowing what I’m eating, so I keep tabs on caloric values, even if I no longer count them like I used to.
Yield: 24 cookies
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1tsp vanilla extract
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup self raising flour
pinch of salt
3/4 cup craisins
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 175C and line 3 baking trays with baking paper.
Beat sugars and butter for 5 minutes, until pale and creamy. Add egg and vanilla, and beat to incorporate.
In a separate bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Add to butter mixture a little at a time, mixing until completely combined.
Roll tablespoonfuls into balls and place 8 on each tray, leaving a few centimetres for slight spreading.
Bake for 15 minutes until firm and golden. Cool on tray for a few minutes, then move to a cooling rack.
NB from Master 12, Miss 9 and The Husband: apparently, they make a fantastic ice cream sandwich.
NB from Mac the dog:
“I am the goodest boy and didn’t eat the cookies, even though Mama left us together unsupervised. She should reward me. With cookies.”