cranberry, pistachio + ginger blondies

Thursday, October 27, 2011

My mind is on overdrive.

I'm starting to stress out about everything in the upcoming months.

Not only about the tiny, kitten clothed, Canucks fan who will be arriving in 15 short weeks.

But also, we are moving. In 8 weeks.

8 weeks from now, will be in the middle of Christmas.

Which means, my kitchen will be packed and I won't be able to bake.

It also means I have to start thinking about packing.

And paint colours.

And baby things.

And the chore of moving 2 cats. One of which goes into freak-out mode while in the car.

And packing.

I need a cookie. A really good cookie. A cookie with Christmas flavours, but could be made at anytime of the year without looking conspicuously like a Christmas cookie.

Along my travels, I found a Martha Stewart recipe (in the holiday section no less), for a pear, pistachio and ginger blondie. Well after a few hours of running around to different grocery stores, and not finding dried pears, I used dried cranberries instead. I would really love to try these again with dried pears, but the cranberries were a great match. They are a very soft crumb blondie, with nice taste from the candied ginger, which seems to melt inside of the square.

Let's just say, while I was making them, the husband asked what I was putting in the blondies, I responded "cranberries, candied ginger and pistachios". He responded with a face, that could've made you turn to stone and a "blech."

The next morning, I found a large wedge missing from the pan. Guess they weren't that bad......

Cranberry, pistachio + ginger blondies
[ adapted from Martha Stewart ]

9 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup candied ginger, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 9-inch springform pan generously with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat together the butter and brown sugar, on medium speed, until light in colour and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla, beat well to mix. On low speed, add the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the cranberries, pistachios, and ginger.

Pour mixture into the prepared springform pan and bake for 50 minutes, or until top is golden brown and a tester inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack before removing outer-ring. Cool completely before slicing into wedges.