Tuesday, February 16, 2010

ORANGE-PECAN-WHITE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

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This recipe, adapted from Ghiradelli, makes a sweet, chewy cookie with a crunchy exterior full of complex,  outstanding flavors.  The original recipe calls for Macadamia nuts, but I used pecans instead.  Just about everyone who tasted these thought the pecans were Macadamia nuts, but I’m not sure why.  Although pecans and Macadamia nuts both taste buttery, the appearance of the nuts is distinctly different. 
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The original recipe is on the back of packages of Ghiradelli white chocolate chips.  I made changes, noted below.  These cookies got the most raves of anything I have made lately, and I would definitely make them again.  The orange zest, though not in the original, is the final touch that takes these over the top.  
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I used 1/4 cup dough per cookie to make 17 (3-1/2”) cookies; and rounded tablespoonfuls of dough to make 8 smaller cookies.  Everyone liked the larger cookies better.  Although they’re very soft when they first come out of the oven, they firm up and become sturdy.   Use a toothpick inserted near center to test for doneness.  If it returns with just a few crumbs, remove the cookies from the oven.
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Orange-Pecan-White Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Ghiradelli
Rating:  9.5 out of 10
PRINTABLE RECIPE
INGREDIENTS:  1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter. 
1 cup brown sugar
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar (I used 3 Tbsp. NuNaturals Stevia + 3/4 cup sugar)
1 Tbsp. finely grated orange zest  (my addition)
2 large eggs
2-1/4 tsp. vanilla (I used 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla  extract+ 3/4 tsp. chocolate extract)
3 cups all-purpose flour (I used 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour + 1 cup bread flour)
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt (I used sea salt)
2 cups Ghiradelli white chocolate chips
1 cup Macadamia nuts (I used toasted broken pecans)
Heat oven to 350F.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Let butter sit on counter for about 1/2 hour.  Do not soften in microwave, and do not allow butter to get too warm.  In large bowl, cream butter, sugars and zest on medium speed of mixer.  Beat in eggs and flavoring.  Stir in flour, baking soda and salt, mixing only till barely combined.  Fold in chips and nuts.  Using 1/4 cup dough for each cookie, drop mounds onto cookie sheet, spacing several inches apart. 

Bake 13-16 minutes, or till lightly browned on edges.  Do not overbake.  Cookies will be very soft.  Allow to sit in pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling.  Yield:  21 (3-1/2”) cookies

16 comments:

Anncoo said...

This is definitely delicious ~ nice combo orange and pecan nuts. Already printed the recipe~ thanks!

Anonymous said...

judyskitchen.blogspot.com; You saved my day again.

George Gaston said...

Judy, this is a very different sounding cookie. But I bet the orange gives a savory taste giving the person eating it a wonderful surprise.

I'll have to give these a try, thanks.

Barbara Bakes said...

Orange zest does sound like a great addition these cookies!

Lynda said...

These cookies look fantastic, Judy, not only because of their size, but all the nuts and white chocolate chips too! I love your addition of orange zest.

biz319 said...

Wow - orange zest - never would have thought of that one!!

Looks delicious as usual!

My Carolina Kitchen said...

I love anything with pecans. We had a tree in the back yard when I was growing up and they were always so fresh. I like the zest you used. I'm using zest in things more and more these days.
Sam

teresa said...

i will be trying these very soon, they look fantastic!

A Year on the Grill said...

that extra orange is a great little extra!

♥peachkins♥ said...

mouthwatering cookie!

Juliana said...

Oh! These cookies look so good...orange and pecan...it is a MUST!

Debbie said...

Oh Judy, my mouth is just watering as I look at those cookies!!!

Kim said...

I love the addition of the orange zest and think these look incredible. Bookmarking to make for my husband.

Katy ~ said...

Orange zest and macadamia nuts win my heart.

Thank yo for posting this tasty cookie recipe!

Katrina said...

These look great. I've been so behind on blogging, but have just enjoyed a bunch of your last posts. These cookies look awesome with great flavors.

Judy said...

Katrina, welcome back old friend.