Last week I was feeling a little bit nostalgic for my children’s baby and toddler hood. I think it was because my son reaches a big milestone next week, he officially becomes a teenager! How I didn’t listen to people that said “Oooh savour every moment, time will pass quickly!” Now both my children are taller than me (just!), I can’t help wondering where my children have gone. I really enjoyed my children being young, playing with them and helping them to learn new skills. As a teaching assistant and supply teacher in KS1 in my day job, working with the younger age range gives me a lot of happiness. Thankfully, they are great kids and although like all children they have their moments, I wouldn’t change them for the world.
Anyway, what has this got to do with the title of this post/ Well, one of the first recipes I enjoyed baking with my toddler children over 10 years ago were these moreish Apricot and White Chocolate Cookies from my Annabel Karmel “Complete Family Meal Planner” recipe book. I first bought this book when my son was a baby and have used it constantly ever since for family recipes, baking and suchlike. In fact I am on my third copy of the book as the previous two fell apart one by one. Hope it won’t ever go out of print or I’m in trouble.
The recipe introduction for the cookies says ” This fabulous and rather unusual combination of dried apricots and white chocolate makes irresistible cookies. Once you have sampled these you probably want to double the quantities second time around”
At first I wondered whether my children would eat dried apricots. They loved raisins and I’ve always liked dried apricots chopped up small and mixed in with things but not on their own, whole! I knew they would eat the white chocolate!
Another key ingredient in the cookies is also rather unusual and an ingredient I had not used in baking before at the time- cream cheese! I know it sounds strange but then I hadn’t even twigged you could make icing with it either, let alone adding it to cookies.
Last week, after not making this recipe for about 3 years, I thought I would give it a go again. It was a Friday afternoon, my day off from work and I wanted to make something for my children for when they got in from school. They always seem to be hungry after school and although I make them eat fruit, it was Friday and I wanted to treat them.
The oven was put on to heat up and I lined four baking trays with parchment. The butter was a bit on the hard side and it took ages for it to cream together with the cream cheese. Once that was done I added some caster sugar until the mixture went fluffy. The flour was added in, followed by chopped dried apricots and some white chocolate chips. These cookies do not contain eggs.
It is quite a soft dough but I used my cookie dough scoop to make sure I had equal measurements and luckily they don’t take long to bake. I had to put them in the oven in two batches though. The recipe says you get 26 cookies out of it. I doubled my portions but still got 26 cookies, they were small ones so who knows how tiny they would have been if I had made 26 cookies from the original recipe.
The cookies aren’t the most attractive cookies on the planet and sadly there isn’t a corresponding picture in the book to see what they should really look like. I felt mine looked very rustic and would certainly not win a competition on looks.
However, when the children got in from school they were pleased I had baked. They ate two there and then. I had to hide the rest but they do freeze well!
Love Sam xx