My family loves this recipe. It is requested by family and coworkers every year. I also sometimes use dried apricot in place of orange peel. Otherwise I don't change a thing.
- 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 5 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup dried cranberries
- 3/4 cup dried tart cherries
- 1/2 cup candied orange rind
- 3/4 cup whole blanched or slivered almonds, coarsely chopped
- Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each addition. Add lemon rind and next 2 ingredients, mixing well.
- Combine flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture, beating just until dry ingredients are moistened.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; lightly flour hands, and knead in cranberries, cherries, orange rind, and almonds.
- Divide dough in half; shape each portion into a 14- x 2-inch log on a lightly greased baking sheet. Flatten logs slightly.
- Bake at 325° for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheet 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cut each log diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices with a serrated knife using a gentle sawing motion, and place slices on ungreased baking sheets.
- Bake at 325° for 10 minutes; turn cookies over, and bake 10 additional minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool.
- NOTE: If you can't find dried cranberries and cherries at your supermarket, substitute raisins, dates, or chopped dried apricots.
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