'Tis the season for baking and yet it's also a time of year when many of us (myself included) don't have as much time to bake as we'd like. As usual, I'm flabbergasted.
Today is Christmas Eve.
Tomorrow is Christmas Day.
I had a plan of action.
I had a list of cookies, and cakes, and tarts to make.
I've made none so far. Who am I kidding: I lost the list weeks ago.
This year I'm thankful for slice and bake options like this one. These fruitcake cookies are festive, and delicious. You might be surprised how many supposed-fruitcake-haters will tuck into these. Toss in any of the candied fruits/dried fruits you can get your hands on, just make sure to not go overboard with the amounts because we do like a little cookie with our candied fruits.
So, don't panic that it's already December 24th, 2012.
Just take a deep breath, bake, and enjoy.
Fruitcake cookiesPublished: December 24th, 2012, Cook time: About 18 minutes
Makes 4 dozen
- 454 grams (1 pound) dried and candied fruit (I used mostly sultana raisins with chopped candied cherries, candied mixed peel, dates, and crystalized ginger)
- 3 tbsp brandy
- 170 grams chopped walnuts
- 373 grams (2 2/3 cups) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cloves
- 230 grams (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 100 grams (1/2 cup)granulated sugar
- 72 grams (1/3 cup) light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- Begin by combining the raisins in a small saucepan with the brandy. Heat them together on medium-low until the brandy begins to steam. Close the lid and let the raisins absorb the alcohol. Set aside to cool
- In a large bowl, combine the rest of the candied/dried fruits, along with the steeped raisins and brandy, and the walnuts. Set aside for later.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and cloves. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and the sugars until they are light and creamy (about 2 minutes).
- Add the egg and beat thoroughly to combine, scraping down the sides as needed.
- Add the whisked dry ingredients and beat on low til the dough just forms.
- Drop in the mixed fruits (brandy and all) and beat into the dough on low (you may have to knead them in by hand if your mixer isn't powerful enough).
- Divide the dough in half and shape each into a log that is about 2 inches in diameter. Wrap them in clingwrap and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
- Take one of the logs of dough out of the fridge and immediately slice it into 1/2-inch thick slices (yes they are supposed to be that thick). Place the rounds on the parchment lined sheets, keeping each about 1/2 inch apart. Refrigerate any leftover dough.
- Bake the cookies for about 18 minutes until the bottom edges just begin to turn golden brown. Transfer them to a rack to cool.
- Continue slicing and baking the remaining dough.