Whip Up These Make-Ahead Christmas Cookies to Freeze for Dessert Emergencies
Categories: DIY Recipes

Whip Up These Make-Ahead Christmas Cookies to Freeze for Dessert Emergencies

It’s time to stock up those freezers with enough food for a month! You’ve got to be ready for that one festive day when the stores are closed (argh, what if we run out of pomegranate or chips?). While you’re packing that freezer, why not make up some Christmas cookie dough balls and freeze them too? You can bake these cookies straight from the freezer for a last-minute sweet treat — perfect for when those unexpected visitors arrive!

Ingredients:

Makes 18-20 cookies

— 2 + 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

— 1 teaspoon baking soda

— 1 + 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

— ½ teaspoon salt

— ¾ cup minus 1 Tablespoon very soft butter

— ¾ cup light brown muscovado sugar

— ½ cup granulated sugar

— 1 large egg

— 1 egg yolk

— 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

— 1 cup roughly chopped white chocolate

— ¾ cup dried cranberries

— ¾ cup pistachios, roughly chopped

Instructions:

1. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, cornstarch and salt. Set aside.

2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter and the two sugars until thoroughly combined. Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract and whisk again until combined.

3. Pour the wet mixture into the bowl with the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until fully combined.

4. Reserve two tablespoons each of the white chocolate chunks, cranberries and pistachios, and mix the rest into the cookie dough. Place some plastic wrap over the bowl and chill in the refrigerator for two hours. It’s very important to chill the dough so you don’t get flat cookies that spread all over your baking tray upon baking.

5. When you’re ready to bake the cookies, pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Line three large baking trays with baking parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Take the cookie dough out of the refrigerator and scoop out a heaped tablespoon full. Roll the dough into a ball with your hands and place on a baking sheet. Repeat until you have used all of the dough. Make sure your dough balls are a good distance apart (no more than six cookies on each sheet) as they will spread. Push a couple of cranberries and pistachios into the top of each cookie ball — these will stay on top of the cookie as it cooks — so the fillings aren’t completely hidden inside.

6. Place them in the oven and cook for 10-13 minutes, depending on whether you like your cookies soft and chewy or a bit more crisp. Take them out of the oven and while they are still hot, top with the remaining white chocolate chunks. Leave to cool on the baking tray for 10 minutes before gently lifting off with a spatula and cooling completely on a cooling rack.

Note: You can freeze the cookie balls at the end of step five. Simply place them on a tray lined with parchment paper and freeze. When frozen, place them in a plastic bag or container. They can be cooked from frozen at the same temperature — just add an extra minute to the cooking time.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, cornstarch and salt. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter and the two sugars until thoroughly combined. Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract and whisk again until combined.

Pour the wet mixture into the bowl with the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until fully combined.

Reserve two tablespoons each of the white chocolate chunks, cranberries and pistachios, and mix the rest into the cookie dough. Place some plastic wrap over the bowl and chill in the refrigerator for two hours. It’s very important to chill the dough so you don’t get flat cookies that spread all over your baking tray upon baking.

When you’re ready to bake the cookies, pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Line three large baking trays with baking parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Take the cookie dough out of the refrigerator and scoop out a heaped tablespoon full. Roll the dough into a ball with your hands and place on a baking sheet. Repeat until you have used all of the dough. Make sure your dough balls are a good distance apart (no more than six cookies on each sheet) as they will spread. Push a couple of cranberries and pistachios into the top of each cookie ball — these will stay on top of the cookie as it cooks — so the fillings aren’t completely hidden inside.

Place them in the oven and cook for 10-13 minutes, depending on whether you like your cookies soft and chewy or a bit more crisp. Take them out of the oven and while they are still hot, top with the remaining white chocolate chunks. Leave to cool on the baking tray for 10 minutes before gently lifting off with a spatula and cooling completely on a cooling rack.

Note: You can freeze the cookie balls at the end of step five. Simply place them on a tray lined with parchment paper and freeze. When frozen place them in a plastic bag or container. They can be cooked from frozen at the same temperature — just add an extra minute to the cooking time.

Do you have a favorite “emergency stash” in your freezer? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below.