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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Fruity, Nutty Macaroons for the Blogger Cookie Swap

If you're a food blogger, then you have probably seen the cookie swap logo posted around the blogosphere and you know where I'm headed with this.  Otherwise, let me tell you about an event that's been taking place involving bloggers who like to eat bake cookies.  The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap is pretty much a traditional holiday cookie swap, except it takes place online and through the mail.  There are actual cookies exchanged (!) and instead of handing out photocopies of your recipe, all participants just post the recipes and scrumptious pictures on their blogs.  Fun and easy.
This is the second year of the cookie swap and this year there were over 500 participants and the event raised funds to be donated to Cookies for Kids Cancer.  OXO was nice enough to match the amount of money raised and send everyone participating a nifty "Good Cookie" cookie spatula (you can buy your own here and half the proceeds get donated as well).

Since we are now eating paleo, I selected some dietary restrictions when I signed-up and as there weren't that many other people signed-up with similar food restrictions, I got one match instead of three.  I was matched with Jacqueline from The Dusty Baker and she mailed me the tastiest, crispiest, gluten- and dairy-free chocolate-dipped biscotti that we have all thoroughly enjoyed.

Apparently Jacqueline and I think alike, because I also made cookies that were dipped in chocolate--cranberry, pistachio, and coconut macaroons.  These cookies are also gluten- and dairy-free and have a pretty short ingredient list (basically just coconut, egg whites and sugar).  The only thing keeping these from being paleo is that I added refined sugar, which is pretty much a no-no.  Why, oh why would I do something like that?  I tried them with honey and they were good, but pretty crumbly (which means pretty much un-dippable) and I was hoping that Jacqueline's first thought when she opened the parcel would be something like "Ooh, those look yummy" instead of "What . . are those?"

It seems like pistachios and cranberries are now year-round food items, which makes me incredibly happy, but I still associate them primarily with Christmas.  I thought they would add a nice crunch and tang to the sweetness of the coconut that would make them a little more festive and it worked perfectly.  The recipe follows and you can click right on the recipe to print it.

What foods do you associate with the holidays?  Are there particular cookies or other treats that you make each year?

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