Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Gettin' My Groove Back

Ahh... I can see the light at the end of the tunnel! I may not be finished my first semester yet (it's only the first semester?!?) but things are finally starting to wind down, and my heart rate is returning to normal after last weekend's ohmygodwhydoIhavefourpeoplesworktodoandnohelp stint. To avoid doing my work along the way (and celebrate once I finished!), I baked. A lot. So stay tuned - December's almost here too, which means Christmas baking season is nigh! In fact, today's cookies will be my first contribution to Food Blogga's second annual Eat Christmas Cookies event. You'll remember that I participated gratuitously last year... I promise there will be (slightly) less cookieage this time, but only because I don't have the time to do it all!

Of course, I say that fully knowing that I've done a mass of baking for this Friday, when we have another CAFP bake sale findraiser at my school. Nothing as fancy or decorated as the Hallowe'en treats I made will be coming in from me, though... but I did make chocolate and vanilla sables and some other snackish things that I'll share over the next couple days.

So yes, these cookies... I didn't realize it at the time, but they really are a good "Winter" flavoured snack, since they've got not only chocolate (good all year round, of course!), but cranberries, pumpkin seeds and orange extract too! Cream cheese in place of more traditional butter gives these a great "body" without the grease, which was definitely appreciated by the cookie monsters my mom works with. These cookies are so varied in texture that you'll be reaching for another before you know it... and if you really need to justify it, think of the cookies as protein! Cream cheese is good for you... right?? Ladies and gentlemen... stop your diets!

I called these "Cupboard Cookies" simply because I was in another one of those cleaning moods (again, avoiding the devil homework)!

Cupboard Cookies
Makes 40
1 cup flour
1 cup spelt flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp custard powder
2 tbsp cold water
1/2 tbsp vanilla
1/ tsp orange extract
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup dried cranberries
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Combine flours, baking soda and salt in a small bowl, set aside.
  3. Separately, combine cheese, shortening, and sugars until fluffy.
  4. Whisk together custard powder, water and extracts in a small dish, beat into cheese mixture.
  5. Gradually beat in flour mix.
  6. Fold in chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds and cranberries.
  7. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet 8 minutes.
  8. Cool 2 minutes on sheets, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 86.0
Total Fat: 4.2 g
Cholesterol: 4.6 mg
Sodium: 14.6 mg
Total Carbs: 11.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.5 g
Protein: 1.1 g


  1. Exams should be over soon and life will be more relaxing over the holidays...hopefully. In the mean time...ENJOY!!

  2. Woah, custard powder, what a neat baking ingredient :). These sound like yummy cookies loaded with flavor! Have a great Thanksgiving tomorrow :)!

  3. What a great idea to use cream cheese, Sarah. And with pumpkin seeds, cranberries, and chocolate, these are really Christmas-y. Take care of yourself, my friend. You've got a lot on your plate! :)

  4. I bet the pumpkin seeds add a lot of crunch to these cookies... looks like a good recipe!


Thanks for the feedback!