jubilee jumbles (aka fruitcake cookies)
Steph, the awesome social media manager at America’s Test Kitchen, sent me the ATK Holiday Cookies 2010 Special Issue and just a week after I got it in the mail, it looks like I’ve had it for over a year. Steph said it’s her favorite and I can see why. As I flipped through the pages over and over again trying to come up with my shortlist of cookies to make for Christmas, I realized there were no less than 15 things that I wanted to make over the weekend.
Unfortunately, I don’t have that kind of time, so I had to narrow the list down and these jubilee jumbles were an easy pick. My mom has made fruitcake cookies every Christmas for as long as I can remember, but I’ve never really seen them anywhere else so I was really excited to see these in the ATK Special Issue. Joseph loves my mom’s fruitcake cookies, so he was 100% behind trying this new recipe.
The main differences between the two cookies are that these have almonds instead of pecans, the recipe calls for the whole fruitcake mix rather than just green and red candied cherries and dates, and the candied fruitcake mix is soaked in brandy, and they’re finished off with a glaze. To be honest, we couldn’t quite decide which cookies we like better – my mom’s or America’s Test Kitchen. I love that the citrus that the candied lemon and orange peel in the fruitcake mix adds, and I love that it’s soaked in brandy. At the same time, the dough on the other cookies has such a great, deep rich brown sugar and butter flavor, accented by buttermilk.
When I made these, Joseph commented that he thought he would prefer the cookies without the glaze – he thought it added too much sweetness. We had leftover fruitcake mix so I decided to try a second batch with no glaze and with with pecans instead of almonds and Joseph (after lots of hemming and hawing and sampling) decided he preferred the ones with the glaze. Admittedly that was in part because he preferred the almonds to the pecans. Whatever way you decide to go, these cookies are a great treat to make for the holidays – they’re as festive as they are tasty!