Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Baked Good of the Month Club:December

For the first month of the Baked Good club I thought I'd do something a little seasonal and turned to Ms. Martha for some help. This recipe is similar but not exactly the same as the one I found on Martha's website.

For the Macerated Cherries
1 cup dried cherries, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 tablespoon orange zest

For the Honeyed Almonds
1/2 cup honey
2 tablespoons unsalted butter (or I Can't Believe it's Not Butter)
2 cups sliced almonds
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cookie Dough
2 sticks unsalted butter (or I Can't Believe it's Not Butter)
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 1/4 cup wheat flour
1 1/4 teaspoons salt

1. Prepare the macerated cherries. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and toss to combine. Let stand for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

2. Make the honeyed almonds. Cook honey and butter in a medium saucepot over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and deep amber, about 5 minutes.

Add almonds, salt, and vanilla, stir to completely coat. Remove from heat and spread on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Let cool about 30 minutes then coarsely chop.

3. Make the dough: Beat butter and sugar with a mixer (oh how I can't wait to have a KitchenAid) on medium speed until pale and fluffy.

Add macerated cherries, mix until combined. Add flour and salt, mix until dough comes together, about 1 minute. (There is always some crumbling with whole wheat flour but just so long as it holds together for the most part.) Add honeyed almonds and mix until just combined.

4. Form dough into a rectangular log on a piece of wax paper (this is the part I royally sucked at) make the log approximately 2 1/2 inches wide. Wrap in wax paper and refridgerate for at least an hour (can be refridgerated for 2 days and frozen for up to 3 months). Cut dough into 1/4 inch thick slickes and lay on baking sheet lined with wax paper. Chill in refrigerator for 1 hour.

5. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Bake until cookies are set (35-40 minutes in my oven).*

The recipe says the cookies taste a bit like fruit cake but thats only because of the fruit. They're really tasty and not overly sweet. I think the next time I bake these I might try them out with cranberries too.

*Just so you know you can bake directly on wax paper, I was sorta confused about this at first.


Brittney said...

Ooo! Baking! My bff just started her site ( so I'm going to toss this her way, I bet she tries it!

jenloveskev said...

mmm i might have to try these!

mylittlebecky said...

that looks yummtastic! :)

my name is lauren. said...

i totally gave a "baked good of the month club" as a gift for both my dad and my father-in-law this christmas too!

it's going to be awful making my january treat since i'm doing a 3-week cleanse where i can't eat any treats :(.

oh...and i got the e-mail you just sent me and i would love to exchange back and forth mail. i'll e-mail you my address sometime soon. i have to go through and organize the e-mails i got and then i think i'll start sending mail next week. i'm excited!