This time, I'm taking the traditional flavors of cranberry, orange, and walnut and giving them a tropical twist by swapping out the orange for lime. Yup. That's right. Lime.
But how to infuse these guys with lime? The problem with lime as a flavoring is that you've got to use a lot of liquid, which makes a very wet dough and a very, very cakey cookie.
So, to make sure I packed these cookies with a nice balance of lime and cranberry flavors without making a soupy mess, I relied on two of my tried-and-true tricks.
The first thing I decided to due was to enplumpen the craisins with brewed lime tea and lime juice. (I had some key lime tea in my cupboard, but use whatever lime tea you have on hand or can find easily at the grocery store.) This trick ensures your dried fruit are plump and--most imporant--filled with lime flavor.
The next thing was to replcace the traditional wet ingredients--egg and extract(s)--with fresh cranberries stewed with lime juice, zest, and extract. This is a really successful trick I use in my XXX cookies, and it really pumps up the flavor.
The cranberry and lime really work well with the wallnuts. Sweet and tangy, crunch and chewy. In other words, yummy!
Makes 3 dozen cookies. (To see this recipe in process, check out Picturing Cranberry, Lime, and Walnut Cookies.)
1 stick butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup halved whole cranberries
3 tablespoons white sugar
3 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons lime zest
1 tablespoon lime extract
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon milk
1 pinch salt
|2 1/2 cups craisins
2 cups hot water
4 lime tea bags
juice of 1 lime
|3 cups oatmeal
1 cup flour
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon salt
- Soak the craisins in the enplumpening liquid for 30-45 minutes. Set aside until Step 7.
- In a small saucepan, heat the cranberries; milk; lime juice, zest, and extract; vanilla; white sugar; and salt over medium high heat. Stir with a wooden spoon, crushing the cranberries until the the mixture is smooth and evenly red.
- Remove the cranberry mixture from the heat and set aside to cool until Step 5.
- Preheat oven to 350º.
In your Kitchen Aid or a large mixing bowl, cream together the cooled creamables.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients. Using a spatula, fold together until evenly distributed.
- Strain the craisins and discarding the enplumpening liquid. Add the enplumpened craisins to the combined dry ingredients. Mix together until well incorporated.
Slowly add the dry ingredients to the combined creamables and wet ingredients. Mix until evenly combined.
- Shape dough into balls--about 2 tablespoons each.
- Place the dough balls about 2 inches apart on Silpat- or parchment paper-lined cookie sheets.
- Bake at 350º for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the cookie sheets from the oven and let stand for 2 minutes. Then place cookies on wire racks to cool.