There is no such thing as the perfect cookie, but this one may take a lot of votes. My yearly cookie recipe this year is a faithful rendition of a cookie I love from the amazing Hearth Artisan Bread in Plymouth. They are best known for their perfect breads, but they also make one cookie, and they make it very well.
The Ambrosia cookie at Hearth is a large sugar cookie the size of your hand full of dried apricots, almonds and white chocolate. I love the flavors and I love the crunchy texture of their cookie. My version is similar adding only toasted coconut to the list of the ingredients. However getting the texture was a little tricky. I found my answer to the delicate, crunchy texture at Lori Lang’s Recipe Girl blog. Her Crunchy Nutmeg Sugar Cookies use cream of tartar to achieve the perfect texture.
You can change the additions here however you want. Substitute dried cranberries for the apricots, pecans for the almonds or even dark chocolate in place of the white chocolate. Whatever you change, do yourself a favor. Don’t use sub-par white chocolate. Almost all white chocolate sold as chips and many of the ones sold as white chocolate bars are not white chocolate at all. Check the ingredient list on the white chocolate and make sure that cocoa butter is one of the first two ingredients. I used Ghiradelli white chocolate bars, not chips as the chips did not contain cocoa butter.
Oh, and these cookies are my addition to the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. If you are new to the cookie swap, it’s a great way for food bloggers to reach out and interact while raising money and awareness for a good cause. Here’s how it works: food bloggers enter by donating money to Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a charity started by employees at OXO brands. After signing up you are assigned three other bloggers to send a dozen cookies (of an original recipe of your own). Three different bloggers send you a dozen cookies each. Then, while trying not to get cookie crumbs in the keyboard we publish our recipes as well and a usual shout-out to the other bloggers in your little circle. The program raises money for childrens’ cancer research and it also happens to involve cookies, so it’s sort-of a no-brainer.
I sent a dozen cookies off to Camilla at Culinary Adventures with Cam, Sarah at Cooking Onions and Alaina at Crumb and Nibbles. I then received Double Chocolate Cherry Crackles from Nicole at Pinch my Salt and White Chocolate Peanut Butter Snowmen Cookies from Erica at Erica’s Sweet Tooth. What a treat.
- 10 tablespoons butter (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup dried apricots, diced
- 1/2 cup toasted coconut
- 3 ounces (about 2/3 cup) chopped white chocolate
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt in a bowl and set aside.
- Cream the butter and sugar in a mixer on medium. Add the egg and vanilla and beat for a full two minutes, scraping down the side. The mixture should be very light and fluffy. Add the flour mixture and mix until just combined, scraping down the side once. Remove from the mixer and fold in the almonds, apricots, coconut and white chocolate.
- Form the dough into 1" balls (about 1 tablespoon). Roll each dough ball in powdered sugar and then place on a baking sheet about two inches apart. Use a flat-bottomed glass to press each ball of cookie dough flat. Bake until the edges are just starting to turn a light golden brown, about 12 minutes. Allow to cool slightly on pan then move to a cooling rack until the cookies have fully cooled.