White Chocolate, Cranberry & Pistachio Cookies

IMG_0816Prepare yourselves, it’s going to get a heck of a lot more Christmassy round here. With another bake off at work coming up (the very successful first one blogged about here) but this time festively themed, it is high time to start practising the slightly more joyeux noel bakes. Now, to ease us all into the merry mood of Christmas cheer, I’ve adapted my tried and tested go-to recipe for white chocolate (or any chocolate) cookies, into more of a red and gold affair. By adding cranberries and pistachios these cookies are transformed into a buttery holiday treat that you can easily gift to friends and family. Pop a few in a cellophane bag, tie with a ribbon and you’ve got a lovely, thoughtful homemade present! Cheaper and tastier than a Sanctuary spa Boots gift set. You can thank me later!IMG_0808_2Ingredients (makes 24 cookies)

  • 170g butter
  • 150g light brown sugar
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250g plain flour
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 140g white chocolate chunks
  • 80g dried cranberries
  • 70g pistachios

In a large bowl, beat the softened butter with a wooden spoon until smooth and creamy. Add both the sugars and cream together until pale and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla until fully incorporated. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cornflour, bicarbonate of soda and salt. Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet batter until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips, cranberries and pistachios until evenly dispersed throughout the cookie dough.IMG_0810_2 It will taste ah-mazing at this point! Especially if you snuck some semi-decent white chocolate into the shopping basket on your weekly shop with the parents. No regrets.IMG_0811Cover the dough tightly with clingfilm and chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours for it to firm up. You can make this ahead up to 2 days before you’d like to bake them – spreading the baking enjoyment throughout your week? Genius.

Preheat the oven to 180°C and line two baking trays with greaseproof paper. Take out your cookie dough and let it come to room temperature for about 15 minutes, to make it easier to handle. Scoop out about a tablespoon of dough at a time and roll into balls, making them slightly taller than they are wide. This will stop them from spreading into thin and crispy cookies, instead keeping them nice and puffy.IMG_0815_2At this point you can press in a few more white chocolate chunks, cranberries or pistachios into the tops of the cookies – wherever it looks like it’s missing a bit. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until slightly golden brown but still soft in the middle. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the baking tray, then use a spatula to move them onto a wire rack to cool completely.IMG_0814After sampling a warm cookie fresh out the oven, these soft and chewy beauties stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to a week. If you’re inclined to be uber organised this year and save the trouble of mass baking in the 24 hour run up to Christmas day, you can even freeze them in their little festive treat bags to be given out to friends and family nearer the time. Clever idea? I think yes. But at this rate I might need to invest in a second freezer.

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