When the boys were young, we used a Countdown to Christmas calendar. It had a pocket for each day that held a strip of paper with an activity that would help us get ready for Christmas. Even though I haven't used that calendar for many years, I still like the concept of spreading out the holiday activities, and try to do one or two things every day to make the season less hecticI made these rich, decadent cookies to take to a party tonight. The recipe's from Martha Stewart.
DOUBLE CHOCOLATE CRANBERRY COOKIES
16 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used Ghirardelli chips--no chopping required!)
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt 10 ounces chocolate (Martha suggested using a double boiler, but I did mine in the microwave). Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until combined. Beat in melted chocolate. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture; beat just until combined (do not overmix). Fold in 6 ounces chocolate and cranberries.
Drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls, 3 inches apart, onto parchment-lined baking sheets. In batches, bake cookies until edges are dry and tops are cracked, 15 to 17 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Let stand on sheets 3 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool.
(Note: I wanted smaller ones than the recipe called for, so I used a 2-teaspoon scoop and decreased the baking time proportionally. I ended up with almost 7 dozen bite-sized cookies.)