Candied Fruit & Nut Cookies Recipe
Filled with chopped fruits and nuts, these no-fuss drop cookies are full of nutty and fruity goodness. They’re always a hit at holiday time.
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 1/2 cups chopped candied fruit
- 1 1/2 cups of your favorite nut, chopped (walnuts, pecans, almonds, etc.)
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg. Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Fold in fruits and nuts. Drop by teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto greased baking sheets. Bake at 375° for 8 – 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to wire racks. Let cool completely before handling. Yield: 5 dozen.
BAKING TIP: We used a small melon scoop to make these cookies because we found that they held together better by doing so. Add more cinnamon and nutmeg to the recipe if you prefer a darker spiced cookie.
Why not switch things up and make your holiday fruitcake in cookie form? These cookies are a delicious, bite-sized take on the traditional holiday dessert. And for the rest of the year…there’s no need to wait for the holidays to get the big taste of fruitcake!
BONUS SECTION – CANDIED FRUIT QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS:
What is in mixed candied fruit? Fruits that are commonly candied include dates, cherries, pineapple, and a root, ginger. The principal candied peels are orange and citron; these with candied lemon peel are the usual ingredients of mixed chopped peel (which may also include glacé cherries).
How does fruit become candy? Candied fruit is made by soaking fresh fruit pieces in a sugar syrup, then heating the mixture until all the fruit’s original water content is replaced with sugar.
How can I make candied fruit? Cut your chosen fruit into 1/4-inch (5 mm) slices. For every 1/2 cup of sugar, combine with 1-1/2 cups of water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add your sliced fruit into the boiling sugar syrup, keeping the fruit covered by syrup. Cook at medium-low heat, turning the slices of fruit occasionally, for 40 to 50 minutes or until the fruit becomes translucent, but still intact. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the sliced fruit onto a wire rack. Let cool and dry overnight. Roll sliced fruit in a layer of sugar to complete your candied treat.
How can I make candied citrus peel? Cut your chosen citrus fruit into quarters. Cut off the peel, but leave a thin layer of the pith attached. Cut into 1/2-inch (1 cm) strips. Blanch the peels by covering your citrus peels with water and bring to a boil for one minute. Do this three times using fresh water each time. For every 1/2 cup of sugar, combine with 1-1/2 cups of water in a saucepan and simmer your blanched peels over low heat for 45 to 60 minutes, or until translucent. Remove citrus peels from syrup, transfer to wire rack to cool, then coat in sugar. To make orangettes, dip half of a candied orange peel into melted chocolate.
If you have any leftover sugar syrup, it can then be used to moisten cakes and sweeten drinks such as iced tea, cocktails and sparkling water. Also, the sugar syrup should keep well in the refrigerator for a few weeks.
When drying candied fruit, set a tray lined with parchment or wax paper beneath your wire rack to catch any drippings