1. Christmas Presents - Check
2. Enough bottles of wine to last us 'til Easter - Check
3. Turkey and Ham for the Big Day - Check
4. Chestnuts roasting on an open fire - Check
5. Jack Frost nipping at my nose - Check
5. Christmas Baking - ...............................
All you bloggers have been busy little elves over the past few weeks putting the rest of us to shame with your Gingerbread Houses, Christmas Fruit Cakes, Christmas Pudding, Yule Logs. I've looked at them all and if the truth be told, I may have salivated over some of them. But I haven't baked anything with a Christmas theme - Christmas baking doesn't go down so well in our house so I would be the one scoffing the lot. Granted, I would do it gladly but my rotund middle wouldn't thank me for it!
To keep everyone happy, Christmas baking this year will be a Baileys Cheesecake, Tiramisu (can that even be classed as baking?), Nigella's Puddini (Christmas pudding and melted chocolate rolled into truffle sized balls) and these Choc Chip cookies. After that, I feel no guilt in saying that I'm putting my feet up and digging into the tin of Roses.
To make these cookies a little bit special, I've soaked the fruit in a few tablespoons of rum but I've drained most of it out so don't worry about getting an alcohol kick - the taste is extremely subtle as I drain off most of the alcohol. If you'd prefer, just leave out the rum altogether and I guarantee you these cookies will still taste amazing.
Adapted from Nigella Lawsons "Feast"
Makes 30 cookies
2 tablespoons dark rum
75g dried cranberries
140g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
75g rolled oats
125g butter, softened
175g soft brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
50g pecans, roughly chopped
140g white chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 180C. Place the cranberries in a small bowl and add the rum. Set aside for at least an hour, stirring every now and again so that a little bit of rum hits each cranberry.
Combine the flour, baking powder and oats and set aside.
Beat the butter and sugar until creamy and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat again. Beat in the flour mixture then fold in the chocolate chips and the pecans.
Drain the rum from the cranberries and fold them into the mixture.
With the dough in the mixing bowl, leave it in the fridge to set for 10-15 mins.
Roll tablespoonfuls of dough into balls with your hands and place them on a lined baking sheet. Then squish the dough balls down with a fork.
Bake for 15 mins after which they should be golden at the edges. Allow to cool slightly on the baking tray for 5 mins before they cool fully on a wire rack.