Sunday, November 25, 2012

Pecan Thumbprint Cookies with Cranberry Chutney

I love, love this time of year.  The weather just looks and smells like the fall season with winter around the corner.  Here in the Bay Area, we are beggining to experience rain and often chilly nights.  It is the perfect weather for having a fire at night and tons of blankets for watching our favorite television programs.  Hubby and I are currently making our way through the "Countdown to Christmas" which features new holiday movies on the Hallmark channel.  They are "feel good" movies that 9 out 10 times have a romantic story behind them.  Okay, we are saps for a great romantic storyline.  Smile.

Along the holiday themed time of year is when I accomplish quite a bit of baking and especially baking a ton of tasty cookies.  Hubby absolutely adores both Spritz and thumbprint cookies.  Yesterday was the kick off to the cookie baking festivities.  I love putting a different or unique spin on recipes and making them my own.  The Pecan Thumbprint with Cranberry Chutney is such a cookie.

I tweaked this recipe and added my favorite "proven winner" chutney to produce a spectacular new holiday favorite.  The combination of flavors, colors and textures makes this the perfect holiday cookie.  Be careful – these will not last long in your house.  Happy Holidays!!

Pecan Thumbprint Cookies with Cranberry Chutney
Makes between 36 and 40 cookies

3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 t. tablespoon salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten + 1 tablespoon water
¾ cup toasted pecans, chopped fine

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat together butter and sugar with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy, then beat in vanilla. With mixer on low, gradually add flour and 2 teaspoon table salt, and beat to combine. Press dough together in plastic wrap or into two balls, and then roll into 1 1/4-inch balls. I used a small cookie scoop to ensure each cookie was uniform in size. Dip each ball in beaten egg with water, and roll in the pecans. Place balls on parchment-lined baking sheets, and press an indentation into each with your thumb. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, then remove sheets from oven, and re-press indentations. I used the end of a rounded knife to push the dough down. Let cool on wire racks. Repeat with remaining dough. Fill each thumbprint cookie with a teaspoon of the Cranberry Chutney.

Cranberry Chutney
Makes about 10 to 11 half pint jars.
4 t. Olive Oil
2 C. Onion, fine dice
8 T. Fresh Ginger, minced
¾ C. Orange Juice
Zest of 2 oranges
5 (12 oz) packages of fresh cranberries
2 ¾ C. Sugar
½ C. Red Wine Vinegar
½ t. Salt
In a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil and the minced onions. Sauté over medium low heat for about 15 minutes or until the onions are translucent. Add the minced ginger and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, then add all of the other ingredients and stir well. Cook over medium heat for 30 to 45 minutes until the mixture is thickened. After the first 15 minutes you may need to turn down the heat and let is simply simmer.
Process your canning jars by either sterilizing in the oven for 15 minutes at 225 degrees or boil them for 5 to 10 minutes. Fill each jar to almost the top with leaving ½ inch clear. Top with lid and tighten slightly. Process in boiling hot water and place each jar on the canning rack. Remove with canning tongs onto a towel and let cool. Each lid should not pop and be completely sealed. Tighten the lid, label and store in a cool dark place.


  1. Wow, I'm curious about the flavor of your cranberry chutney-sure does looks pretty;-) Let the Christmas baking begin!!!

  2. Holiday baking is the best! I love thumbprint cookies - the pecans and cranberry chutney together sound perfect!

  3. I'm already in love with your winter chutney! (Adore cranberry anything!). These cookies look delicious!!

  4. These are so...... pretty and look delicious! I love this time of the year also along with all the fun and colorful ingredients!

  5. Yum, Lisa! Thumbprint cookies are my favorite and I really like the combination of pecans and cranberry in your recipe. A must try for sure!

  6. Beautiful cookies Lisa! I hope your Thanksgiving was delicious and beautiful in every possible way!

  7. These are lovely cookies! So unique with the cranberry chutney!

  8. I'm so excited about the holidays, too. Even more than usual. Even thinking of picking up my tree this week which is early by my normal habits.

    These cookies would be the perfect snack for nibbling on in front of the fire or the TV. Love them!

  9. we began to watch all the Christmas movies as well, tucked on the sofa with a cup of hot chocolate. It's my favorite time of the year.
    Your cookies sound amazing Lisa, I love the cranberry chutney. Perfect for the holidays

  10. I will take a fire, curled up under a blanket, and a couple of these cookies with a cup of tea - sounds like the perfect evening!

  11. I can't wait to snuggle on a cold evening and watch old Christmas movies. A few of these tasty cookies would make the evening even better:)

  12. I'm fired up for the holidays and all the holiday cookies for sure. Love the chutney you used. I'd also have to say pecans are up there on the all-time favorite nut list. I might try that chutney but scale it back a bit, my pantry is already busting at the seams. Hope you are having a great week.

  13. I love the holidays as well and fall is my very favorite season :)
    These cookies are certainly perfect to celebrate with...and so pretty!

  14. What a beautiful cookie Lisa! I love the pecan and cranberry combo. The chutney looks wonderful!

  15. I made these cookies yesterday. Holy Moly amazing. I'm not a sweet freak and these were a perfect balance of salty/savory with tart and tangy. What a great and unique holiday treat. Thank you for the recipe.

  16. This recipe was AMAZING! I made 1/2 a batch yesterday for a Christmas gift basket and they were so lovely and DELICIOUS! Perfect combo of salty/savory and tart. Thank you. These impressed for sure.


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