Chocolate-dipped Cranberry Pecan Kisses

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

You know you’ve hit on something good when you have to make two batches of it in order to have enough for a complete photo shoot!  And I still had to be careful of camera angles…

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

This recipe originated in my Ma’s kitchen, probably about 20 years ago.  I told you she was “eating clean” before that was even a thing!  I still have her handwritten recipe for these kisses on an index card, and the only changes I’ve made are to roll them in balls (she flattened them into cookies), reduce the maple syrup a tiny bit, and dip them in chocolate.  This indulgence takes these kisses to a whole ‘notha level, and I’m sure Ma would approve.  Of course, if you want to keep it simple, just skip the dip, and you won’t be disappointed. Well, you might be a little…

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

These kisses require only 5 ingredients and about 35 minutes to prepare, including the dipping.  That’s pretty amazing for a Christmas cookie!  They are vegan, gluten-free, refined-sugar free, and suitable for paleo diets (although I’m not sure cavemen had access to chocolate…)

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

The only slightly tricky part is forming the dough into balls (or mounds, or whatever shape you want,) because it’s really sticky!  You can get around this by keeping a little dish of cold water by your bowl and dipping your fingers to keep the mixture from sticking to them too much.

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

Melt your dipping chocolate while you wait for your baked kisses to cool, then dip away!  I dipped half in the chocolate, then used the tines of a fork to fling the rest of the chocolate on top.  But do whatever suits you!  Dip the whole thing if you like, or just glaze the top… whatever floats your boat.

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

I have to warn you, though- they’re addictive!  They’re small and easy to pop into your mouth.  I don’t normally have the urge to eat past my, ahem… “reasonable point of fullness”… but these little bites of heaven defy all sense of reason.  The flavour and texture combination of sweet toasted pecans, chewy coconut, tart dried cranberries, rich dark chocolate, just a pinch of salt… well, they can be dangerous.  There, you’re warned.

Chocolate-dipped cranberry pecan kisses

Now, go make them.

Chocolate-dipped Cranberry Pecan Kisses

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: About 18 kisses

Chocolate-dipped Cranberry Pecan Kisses

Ingredients

  • 1 cup raw pecans
  • ¼ cup unsweetened dried coconut
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped dried cranberries
  • pinch of salt
    To dip:
  • 2 oz 70% dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon virgin coconut oil

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 180C (375F) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Place pecans in a blender or food processor, and process until fine crumbs form. Don’t over-process or the pecans will get oily.
  • Remove to a mixing bowl and add coconut, maple syrup, chopped cranberries, and salt. Mix well, until mixture sticks together when you press it.
  • Form small (¾-inch) balls, wetting your fingers as necessary to keep mixture from sticking. Place on baking sheet about 1½ inches apart.
  • Bake 14-15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to a cooling rack and cool for 10- 15 minutes before dipping.
  • To dip, melt chocolate and coconut oil over very low heat in a small saucepan. Dip one side of each pecan ball into the chocolate. Set on parchment paper. Use a fork to distribute the remaining chocolate over the dipped kisses.
  • Chill in the refrigerator until chocolate is set, then store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge.

Notes

The prep time includes the time it takes to cool and dip them... these cookies are fast!

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