I bought cranberries early in the holiday season and put them directly in the freezer, like I always do, but just didn’t run into the need to use them. With just two of us, I don’t make a lot of extras for holiday meals. Now that those days are over, I am getting around to using those cranberries while it is still winter. They seem like a winter fruit, bright red and tart to compliment that cold, stark snow outside. Last week I made some cranberry muffins, but I have to say that it just didn’t seem like the right time for muffins. I think I associate muffins with spring. I prefer a cookie, maybe because they keep well, almost getting better over time, and that seems like a winter thing. They seem less decadent than most desserts, although I know that’s a false sense.
I adapted a recipe, using half the called-for butter, adding solid shortening for the other half, and I used White Lily® flour, which made them more tender than a regular, all-purpose flour. I used a large scoop (about 2 tablespoons), so my yield was lower than the original, and my cookies larger. I did not glaze the cookies, as the original recipe suggests, but I did add vanilla to the batter.
Cranberry Walnut Cookies
Find the original inspiration for these cookies here: Cranberry Orange Cookies
Preheat oven to 375°
Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup solid shortening (like Crisco®)
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon grated fresh or dried orange zest (a jar of dried orange zest is very handy to keep in the pantry)
2 tablespoons orange juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used a soft wheat flour, which changes the cookie texture)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups chopped cranberries
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Cream the butter, shortening, and sugars. Beat in the egg, orange zest, orange juice, and vanilla. Mix the flour, salt, and baking soda and mix into the wet batter. Mix in the cranberries and walnuts. Place scoops of cookie dough about 2 inches apart on parchment-lined cookie sheets. One tablespoon scoops make small cookies; 2 tablespoon scoops make large cookies.
Bake at 375° for 12-14 minutes; I used the longer time for my large cookies.