I deliberated for days about what to bring. I thought about bringing double chocolate rocky road cookie bars. Then at the last minute, after looking through my pantry and finding 4 bars of white chocolate, I changed my mind and made these cookies. I used Ghiradelli white chocolate baking bars, because the first two ingredients listed are sugar and cocoa butter. There are no hydrogenated oils. Check the Hershey's and Nestle's list of ingredients. No cocoa butter in either one.
You have to chop the squares into chunks, but it doesn't take long.
While I prefer crispier cookies, the salt on these kept me coming back for more. There was one major goof: instead of cooling the cookies thoroughly, I put them into plastic bags for transport too soon. They became totally soft. Some people actually prefer soft cookies, so it didn't keep them from being devoured. There's a great flavor going on here, with the subtle orange, the tart-sweet cranberries, the lovely white chocolate and the buttery pecans.
The salt on top is the final touch that takes these over the top.
Salted Oatmeal-Cranberry-White Chocolate Chunk-Pecan Cookies
Adapted from Craisins
Bear Rating: 8.5 out of 10
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup dried cranberries, plain or orange-flavored
2/3 cup light brown sugar
2 Tbsp. orange zest
11 Tbsp. unsalted butter, room temperature, no warmer
2 large eggs, cold
1/2 tsp. orange extract
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. fine sea salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1-1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
7 squares from a Ghiradelli white chocolate premium baking bar (about 2/3 cup, chopped)
1/2 cup toasted chopped pecans
Coarse sea salt for sprinkling
Heat orange juice in microwave in small bowl till almost boiling. Add cranberries; soak for 15 minutes. Drain thoroughly in sieve.
Heat oven to 375F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In work bowl of food processor, pulse sugar and orange zest till combined and no lumps remain in sugar. Add butter and pulse till very smooth. Add eggs
and extract and pulse briefly to combine. Add flour, salt and soda and pulse just till barely combined. Add oats and pulse briefly till everything is mixed. Turn mixture out into large bowl. Stir in white chocolate chunks, pecans and reserved drained cranberries. Stir with spoon or spatula to incorporate ingredients.
Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets, about 2" apart.