28 December 2012

Cookie recipes for leftover cranberry sauce

Remember that ridiculously simple cranberry sauce I told you about last week? It packs a punch, so you may have some left.  You can use it as a relish in sandwiches made with the leftover ham or pork you grilled, stir it into yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast,OR you can make some scrumptious cookies with it.  Here are my two favorites (one is simple, one obscenely gluttonous):


Fatty-Fat-Fat Layered Cranberry Bar Cookie

Buttery shortbread, cranberry sauce, and a chocolate chip-oatmeal cookie on top--better make a plan to resume jogging after you make these.  


Shortbread:
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy; gradually stir in flour until well blended. Spread or pat in an ungreased 13x9x2-inch baking pan and pierce with a fork. Bake at 300° for 20 minutes, until dough is still blond but getting flaky and firm. Remove shortbread from oven, cover in a layer of about a cup of leftover cranberry sauce (you could also do this with any flavor of fruit preserves or a sweet chutney), and then top with 

Oatmeal cookie dough:
 1/2
cups packed brown sugar
1/2
cup butter or margarine, softened
1
teaspoon vanilla
1
cup quick-cooking oats
 1/2
cup unbleached flour
1/2
teaspoon baking soda
1/4
teaspoon salt
1/3
cup semisweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, stir brown sugar and butter until blended. Stir in vanilla and egg until light and fluffy. Stir in oats, flour, baking soda and salt; stir in chocolate chips and nuts.
Onto ungreased cookie sheet, drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart.
Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.

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Cranberry Thumbprint Cookies
Makes about 2 dozen

This is a simple riff on traditional Scandinavian thumbprint cookies; the dough gets replaced with the shortbread dough from above, and the fruit preserves get replaced with leftover cranberry sauce. Simple, rich, and addictive. 

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

about 3/4 cup leftover cranberry sauce
Preheat oven to 325 F.  Line two cookie cheets with parchment paper.

Cream butter, almond extract, and sugar until light and fluffy; gradually stir in flour and salt until well blended. Roll into tablespoon-size balls and flatten slightly with palms; place on cookie sheet.  With your thumb, create a well in the middle and fill with leftover cranberry sauce.

Bake 20-25 minutes or until the bottoms are lightly browned.