I purchased a container of crystallized ginger about a month ago. This ingredient was a little intimating since ginger can have a strong taste, but it is terrific! When deciding on pairing flavors together, I always taste the ingredients by themselves first. Then, I start going through the tastes in my mind that I thought would be perfect together. I did find a website that gave different ways to use crystallized ginger.
Of course, I like citrus in my cookies, and since I had decided to use dried cranberries, the orange seemed a perfect choice. It reminds me of the last time the family was together for the holidays. Orange juice and the zest bring a sweet flavor to any cookie. It helps offset some of the tartness of the cranberries.
How to Make Cranberry Orange Cookies
Prepping Orange and Ginger
The first thing that I prepare is weighing out the powdered sugar and set it aside. Next, I weigh the flour and baking powder into a bowl and run a whisk through to blend.
To prepare the orange, I zest it first using a fine zester. You only want to see the light orange color where you zested. If you see white, go gentler and only zest over the same spot once or twice.
Now I cut the orange in half and juice the oranges. I use a plain old manual juicer I picked up from the grocery store years ago, and they still sell them.
This is the crystallized ginger that I decided to use, but of course, if you have a favorite, just cut them into small pieces.
Mix and Chill the Cookie Dough
Cream the butter and cream cheese together for a minute or two. Next, turn the mixer to a low speed and gradually add the powdered sugar. Now turn the mixer to medium speed for 3 minutes. You may need to scrape down the bowl halfway through the 3 minutes. See how nice and fluffy it looks!
Next, add the egg, orange juice, orange zest, and mix until incorporated. Scrape the bowl sides down and turn the mixer to a low speed. Gradually add the flour mixture and blend for a minute. If needed, use a spatula to ensure all the flour is incorporated. Finally, add the cranberries and ginger.
Wrap the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours.
Baking the Cookies
Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C or 180°C) and line two half-sheet size cookie aluminum cookie sheet pans with parchment paper. I purchase both pans and parchment paper at The Restaurant Store. The parchment paper comes in single packs and also by the case.
I use a paper plate and add the superfine sugar, so it is flat. It makes it easier to roll the cookie dough balls. A medium cookie scooper makes a perfect size for the cookies.
Add twelve cookie balls rolled in the superfine sugar to your sheet pan. Press down lightly on the top so they won't roll when you move the pan to the oven. Bake at 350°F (175°C or 180°C) for 11-13 minutes.
Move the cookies to a cooling rack once they are out of the oven. You can sprinkle powdered sugar on top once they have cooled or not—the picture on the recipe shows the cookies with the powdered sugar, and the image below is without the powdered sugar.
These cookies are stored very well in an air-tight container and last 5-7 days. So if you plan to make them ahead of time, make them up to five days before you need them.
Other Cranberry Cookies
Cranberry Orange with Crystallized Ginger CookiesBarbara Hall
- ½ cup (113.5 g) Butter unsalted room temperature
- 4 ounces (113.4 g) Cream Cheese room temperature
- 1 ½ cups (180 g) Powdered sugar
- 1 (1) Egg room temperature
- ½ Tablespoon (0.5 Tablespoon) Orange juice fresh
- 1 Tablespoon (1 Tablespoon) Orange zest
- 1 ¾ cups (218.75 g) All-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) Baking powder
- ⅔ cups (80.81 g) Dried cranberries
- 2 Tablespoon (2 Tablespoon) Crystallized Ginger cut into small pieces
- 1 cup (200 g) Super fine sugar To roll dough balls through
- ½ cup (60 g) Powdered sugar Dust on top of cooled cookies
- Zest and juice an orange and set the two bowls aside. Weigh or measure the powdered sugar for the cookie dough and set aside. Next, weigh or measure the flour and baking powder together and use a whisk to blend.
- Cream the butter and cream cheese together till blended, about 2-3 minutes on medium speed, with a stand or hand-held mixer. Turn the mixer speed down and slowly add the powdered sugar and incorporate. You want it to be fluffy, so turn the mixer to medium speed for about 2-4 minutes. Turn the mixer down, add the egg, orange zest, and orange juice, and blend. Slowly add the flour and baking powder and mix for about a minute. Turn off the mixer, scrape down the sides and across the bottom, then turn the mixer on for about 30 seconds. Add the cranberries and the crystallized ginger and blend through—cover and chill for 1-2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C or 180°C) and line 2 cookie sheet pans with parchment paper. Take the cookie dough out of the refrigerator and, using a spoon or a cookie scoop (I used medium size), roll it into a good 1" ball. Roll the ball in the Superfine sugar and put it on the cookie pan. The superfine sugar gives the cookies a crust but keeps the middle soft. I take two fingers and gently press the top to flatten the bottom a little. You don't want them to roll around when you put them into the oven.
- Bake for 11-13 minutes, leaving them on the pan for a minute after you take them out of the oven. You want the bottoms a little brown, but that is all. Then move them to a cookie cooling rack. When sufficiently cooled, sprinkle powdered sugar on top for the finishing touch.
I am not a certified Dietitian or Nutritionist. The nutrition amounts given below are provided through a program and are only a guideline.