So, as I mentioned previously, I was striving to make five different types of Christmas cookies this year. The other night I revised this goal.
“I think four types of cookies might be my limit,” I told Nick as I was carefully spooning (approximately) 1/88 teaspoon of apricot preserves into the indentation of a teaspoon-sized ball of dough.
“Gee, so you were only able to make four super-fancy cookie recipes while you’re also studying for final exams in graduate school?”
They are fancy cookies. They also just happen to comprise a theme of number-oriented cookies. Two recipes that are returning from last year’s cookie repertoire have to do with the number three: Trios and Triple Ginger Cookies. (Conveniently going along with the Seven Layer Cookies… I guess I really am a math person.) So it seemed appropriate to have the newcomer be Triple-Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies. I even branched out from my comfort zone- I usually refuse to acknowledge the existence of white chocolate (I mean, it’s not really chocolate, now is it??). But I figure if Ghirardelli makes white chocolate chips, they must not be all evil.
I’m maintaining my December laziness, and I’m just going to refer you to the links to the recipes rather than reprinting them here. Because the cookie baking might finally be done (until Nick eats all of the Trios and wants more), but I still have more gift bows to make and presents to wrap.
Triple-Chocolate Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies (from Bon Appetit, December 2004 via Epicurious)
These are yummy. A little sweeter than I usually like, but hey, it’s Christmas.
Drizzling chocolate is going on my list of things that do not come naturally to me. Rather than painstakingly drizzling each individual cookie in a zig-zag pattern, I adopted a Pollack-like approach. There were a few casualties, but mostly, they turned out well.
Also, these cookies were thinner and more delicate than I expected. This may be the less-than-amazing cookie sheets I have- I think they cause things to spread too much. But they still tasted great… just be aware that they might be a little crumbly and are probably better stored in a tin or hard container, rather than ziplock bags. And worst-case scenario, you end up with some broken cookies to sprinkle on top of ice cream.
Triple Ginger Cookies (from Bon Appetit, December 2009 via Epicurious)
These are delicious and, according to the dietary considerations guide on Epicurous, low-calorie. (At least as far as cookies go, I guess.) A few notes- don’t freak out if you can’t find light molasses. I could only find blackstrap molasses, and they’re fine- just a shade darker. Also, rolling them in raw sugar (aka turbinado sugar) instead of regular sugar gives them a sparkly, festive look.
Every time I make these I am surprised by how good they are. The dough isn’t much beyond sugar, flour, and butter, but they’re wonderfully buttery and the fruit adds a bit of tang and chewiness. It’s a shame they’re so tedious to make, because they are Nick’s favorite and go quickly. If your kitchen is like mine, and your wooden (ahem, bamboo) spoons don’t have rounded handles, and you don’t happen to have a 1/2-inch wide wooden dowel hanging around, a round lipstick tube covered in plastic wrap works perfectly.