Friday, January 7, 2011

My friend Martha

I have a love-hate (or love-love) relationship with Martha Stewart. I love her, well, because she is amazing. I sit on the floor at Borders bookstore in the cooking aisle and drool over her cupcakes. But, I also hate her (or love her even more), because she can take a bag of garbage and turn it into a 5 course meal complete with a centerpiece and place cards made out of pinecones, pots, plants, fruits, vegetables, cheese you name it she can make it (or at least her little elves can). Every recipe I have ever made of Martha's (please note, first name basis) has turned out delicious! My personal favorite was the Ginger Pumpkin bread.

But following a close second were her Cranberry Pecan Cookies...once they were dipped in Chocolate. I know, I am completely predictable. The words I live by are, "When in doubt add chocolate."

Cranberry Pecan Cookies
Adapted Slightly From Martha Stewart
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup semi-sweet or milk chocolate, melted
Cream the butter and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add milk and vanilla. Beat until just combined. With mixer on low, gradually add flour, salt, cranberries, and 1/2 cup pecans; continue beating until fully combined. 

Turn dough out onto a clean work surface, and divide into 2 equal pieces. Shape each piece into an 8-inch log, about 2 inches in diameter. Wrap logs in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.  *Note: This can be frozen up to a month

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Using a sharp knife, cut logs into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Transfer to greased baking sheets. Bake until edges are golden, 14 to 16 minutes, rotating baking sheets halfway through. Remove from oven, and transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once completely cool dip half of the cookie in melted chocolate, place on rack and sprinkle with remaining chopped pecans. Wait for chocolate to harden before serving. 

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