Christmas is my favorite time of year. Oh, I know you hear that all of the time, but seriously I could be one of those crazy people that stay decorated for Christmas year round. As soon as Halloween is over I am chomping at the bit to put up my Christmas goodies and the rest of the family have to hold me back until Thanksgiving. But that is as far as it gets! The day after Thanksgiving my tree goes up and the festivities begin!!
My kids and I have always made cookies at Christmas together and now that they are young adults, those memories bring me so much happiness and joy! I guess you could say I can't think about Christmas without cookies. They just go hand in hand. Even above the whole Christmas dinner, cookies are the first thing I think of in my kitchen at Christmas.
So it just seemed a natural direction for me to go when I found out about the White Christmas Challenge through Very Good Recipes. If I think of a snowy white Christmas, I think of being warm and toasty inside with my kids and the wonderful smells of freshly baked cookies wafting through the air! I can close my eyes and picture it right now!!
This recipe is one that I have made for years, but this year I brought it up a "notch" by soaking the Craisins in rum. You don't have to use the rum. You could soak them in apple cider or even cranberry juice if you like. But I will say that if you try them this way you will be hooked. The rum adds just a touch of a bite to the cookies and soaking the Craisins make them softer and chewier. Either way though, I hope you give these a try. Hopefully they will end up on your "Must have for Christmas" list.
White Chocolate Chip Cookies with Rum Soaked Craisins
1 1/2 to 2 cups Craisins
2 cups rum, regular or spiced
1 cup butter flavored shortening, room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups unsifted flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups white chocolate chips
Place Craisins in a bowl and pour the rum over them, making sure they are all covered by the liquid. Allow to soak overnight. Drain and set aside.
Preheat over to 350 degrees F.
In a medium bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Cream butter and sugars together until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, then add the vanilla extract and beat well. Blend in flour mixture a little at a time until completely incorporated. Add the white chocolate chips and the rum soaked Craisins and combine.
Drop by teaspoonful onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes