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Recipe: Orange Cranberry Cookies

November 22, 2016

One winter in Halibut Cove, our manager and executive chef, Beka Thoning, dedicated several weeks to creating the perfect holiday cookie for the annual cookie swap. "The Cove", as the locals call it, is especially quiet this time of year, but there are always a few hearty souls around to sample the latest creations.

A fresh truckload of organic California oranges just arrived, so we'll pull out a bag of our fall-harvested Alaskan cranberries from the freezer to make these cookies. Lowbush cranberries, or lingonberries, are one of the many native berries found right here in south central Alaska. (Another native berry, the highbush cranberry, has a big seed in the middle and would not work well for this recipe.) Of course, commercially produced store-bought cranberries are a fine substitute and are actually one of the few native fruits that are farmed in North America. Packed full of antioxidants, cranberries were an integral food and medicine for Native Americans.

Using both dried and fresh cranberries gives these cookies a super chewy texture and a robust tangy flavor. Sweetened dried cranberries are ok, but organic unsweetened, unsulphured are the healthier choice.

Orange Cranberry Cookies

Makes about 3 dozen 3" cookies
By Beka Thoning

1/2 cup coconut oil, softened (or butter)
1/2 cup evaporated cane juice (raw sugar)
3 tsp egg replacer + 1/4 c. water (or 2 eggs)
2 teaspoons grated orange zest
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 1/2 cups White Whole Wheat flour (or GF flour)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup dried cranberries, chopped
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
1 1/4 cup walnuts, barely chopped


1.     Preheat the oven to 375° F

2.     Using a food processor or sharp knife, chop the dried cranberries, fresh or frozen cranberries and walnuts. If using a food processor, chop one ingredient at a time by using the "PULSE" function for a rough chop. Chopping the fresh or frozen cranberries is an important step to release the juice into the dough for the perfect moisture level. If using frozen cranberries, chop while frozen and then let them defrost a few minutes before adding to the mix.

3. In a large bowl, cream together the coconut oil & evaporated cane juice until smooth.
In a small bowl, whisk together the egg replacer and water until well blended and add to the creamed mixture. Mix in 1 teaspoon orange zest and 2 tablespoons orange juice. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; stir into the orange mixture. Mix in all the chopped cranberries and walnuts until evenly distributed. Let dough rest for 20 minutes so that the juice has time to soak in, then give one last stir to combine.

4. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls or small ice cream scoop onto parchment paper lined sheet trays. (OR freeze cookie balls on the tray and bag up frozen to bake later.)

5. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes in the preheated oven, until the edges are golden. Gently remove cookies from the sheet trays with a spatula and transfer to wire racks to cool. Try not to eat one... good luck.

This glaze is optional, and you can skip it if you're in a hurry or don't want to use refined sugar, but it does crank up the orange flavor and make the cookies extra-yummy.

Allow cookies to cool completely… then while still on the wire rack:

2 teaspoon grated orange zest
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 cup confectioners/powered sugar

In a small bowl, whisk together zest, juice and sugar until smooth. Drizzle over the tops of the cooled cookies. Let stand 1 hour or so until set...


About Egg Replacer

We love eggs, and we have a lovely flock of laying hens in residence at Stillpoint Lodge. But we often have guests who are allergic to eggs or who follow a vegan diet, and egg replacer is easy to have on hand no matter what the season. We prefer Ener-G egg replacer because it is also gluten free.

About White Whole Wheat Flour

This recipe utilizes our favorite go-to wheat flour, White Whole Wheat. Sometimes known as Ivory Wheat, white whole wheat is a naturally occurring albino variety of wheat. Milled, the flour is 100% whole wheat, contains the bran and germ and is not bleached, so it is still packed with fiber, proteins, vitamins, and minerals. White whole wheat flour is light in color and texture and mild-flavored, making it the perfect choice for bakers who prefer healthier, unrefined ingredients. Whole Wheat or Whole Wheat Pastry Flour works fine, too.

About Gluten Free

We use Namaste Foods Gluten Free Organic Perfect Flour Blend. For most cookie recipes, you can substitute this flour one-to-one with wheat flour. Results will vary, but it does work well for this recipe.

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