This recipe is taken from the new cookbook: Sweet, by Ottolenghi and Helen Goh (definitely one for the Christmas list) and make the perfect little Christmas gifts when wrapped up with a bow (and when the purse strings are tight). The biscuits are much more shortbread than cookie like, with a rich festive flavour and topped off with an indulgent white chocolate drizzle.
125 g dried cranberries (soaked in 25ml orange juice)
150 g (1 cup) almonds
150 g (1 1/4 cups) plain flour (all-purpose flour)
75 g (2/3 cup) wholemeal flour (whole wheat flour)
150 g (1 1/2 cups) jumbo rolled oats
1/4 tsp salt
225 g (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
100 g (1/2 cup) caster sugar (superfine sugar)
finely grated zest of 1 orange
250 g (9 oz) white chocolate, melted
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas Mark 4.
2. Spread the almonds out on a baking tray and roast for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and, once cool enough to handle, roughly chop into 0.5–1cm pieces. Transfer the nuts to a large bowl and add the flours, oats and salt. Mix together and set aside.
3. Increase the oven temperature to 190°C/170°C Fan/Gas Mark 5. Line two or three baking trays with baking parchment and set aside.
4. Place the butter, sugar and orange zest in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment in place. Beat on a medium speed for about 2 minutes, until combined and light. Add the almond and flour mix to the butter and sugar and continue to mix on a low speed until the dough just comes together. Add the cranberries and orange juice and mix for another few seconds to combine, then tip the dough on to a lightly floured work surface. Knead into a ball, sprinkling over more flour if needed to prevent it getting too sticky.
5. Cut the dough in half and roll out one half so that it’s just over 0.5cm thick. Use a 7cm cookie cutter to cut the dough into rounds. Transfer these to a lined tray while you continue with the remaining dough. Bake for 18 minutes, until lightly coloured all over. Remove from the oven and set aside until completely cool.
6. Meanwhile, place the white chocolate in a small bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, stirring occasionally, until melted. Do not let the base of the bowl touch the water. To coat the cookies, use the back of a dessertspoon to spread a tablespoon of melted chocolate over each. Set aside on a cooling rack for the chocolate to set, which can take up to an hour, before serving