15 February 2012

Baby Shower: Cranberry Orange Pinwheels

This baby shower was a great opportunity to try baking new recipes.  I had never made a cake that wasn't chocolate or from the box before this party and I had never made pinwheel cookies.  Something about rolling out dough, mixing the filling, chilling it, and cutting it down to size turned me off.  Too many steps for this self-professed lazy baker?  Probably.

This party made me face my pinwheel fears and attack them head on!  I was so wrong about pinwheels.  They were super easy and yummy.  They are a crunchier cookie, which usually I'm not a fan of, but these were good.  A few people who tried them said they'd be great for a Thanksgiving treat - apparently cranberry is only allowed out in public when the turkey comes out.

Give em a try!

Cranberry-Orange Pinwheels
I highly recommend buying the BHG cookbook. :)

1 cup cranberries
1 cup pecans
¼ cup packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 eggs
2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel
3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

1. For filling, in a blender container or food processor bowl combine cranberries, pecans, and brown sugar. Cover and blend or process until cranberries and nuts are finely chopped; set filling aside.

Hidden bonus: you get to eat a whole orange while making the pinwheels!
2. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and orange peel until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour. Divide dough in half. Cover and chill dough about 1 hour or until easy to handle.

3. Roll half of the dough between pieces of waxed paper into a 10-inch square. Spread half of the filling over dough square to within 1/2 inch of edges; roll up dough. Moisten edges; pinch to seal. Wrap in waxed paper or plastic wrap. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Chill for 4 to 24 hours.

4. Cut rolls into 1/4-inch slices . Place slices 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 375 degrees degree F oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are lightly browned. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Makes about 60 cookies

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