Now that I’ve become somewhat of a baking addict, I’m oh-so-jealous of my friends who’ve been to cookie exchanges during the holiday season. The event seems like a middle-age woman type of thing, but the concept is genius: bake one type of cookie, trade with 10-20 people and come home with a vast assortment of cookies for you to keep picking at all week.
No cookie exchange invites for me this year, though; I guess word of my culinary prowess hasn’t yet reached the masses. But if you’ve got one coming up, or are looking for an easy sweet to bring to Christmas dinner this weekend, these dark chocolate cranberry oatmeal cookies are perfect. They’re beautiful and freaking delicious. The dark chocolate chips (I used my fancy schmancy Ghirardelli chunks) were a perfect balance for the tart cranberries, and the hint of cinnamon was just right.
♦1-1/4 sticks of butter, room temperature
♦1/2 c. sugar
♦1/2 c. brown sugar
♦1 large egg
♦1 tsp. vanilla extract
♦1 c. flour
♦1/4 tsp. salt
♦1/2 tsp. baking soda
♦1/2 tsp. cinnamon
♦1 c. Quaker oats
♦1-1/4 c. dark chocolate chips
♦1 c. chopped fresh cranberries
Cream together butter and sugars. Add egg, then vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon, then add to butter mixture. Add oats, and blend well. Stir in dark chocolate chips and cranberries, and mix. Scoop onto lined baking sheets, and bake for 15 to 18 minutes at 350 degrees.
Total time? 15 minutes prep, 18 minutes bake.
Cost? $3.99 for more fresh cranberries than you need, $2 oats, $2.50 Ghirardelli dark chocolate chips (on sale)
Overall success relative to expectations? 10 out of 10. I’m not a sweets person, but I couldn’t stop eating these — like, every time I walked into the kitchen. I was desperately giving them away to friends and family to keep myself from gaining 10 pounds. Yields about 30 medium-size cookies. And if you’re not feeling the holiday warm-and-fuzzies, skip the cookie exchange and eat them all yourself. I certainly won’t judge.