This recipe was submitted by Mary Ann Cruse and chosen to be in the bakeoff.
1 cup Raisin
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 Tlbs chopped crystalized ginger
1 tsp finely shredded orange peels
1 tsp vanilla
3 2/3 Cups of all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of chopped pecans
1 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp salt
Pecan Topping: in a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup chopped raisins, 1/2 cup of chopped pecans, 3 Tlbs of dairy sour cream and 2 Tlbs of caramel topping. Cover and chill until ready to use.
Orange Glaze Topping: in a small bowl combine 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and 2 Tlbs of orange juice.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place raisins and butter in food processor, process until raisins are chopped and combined with butter. Transfer mixture to an extra large bowl. With an eletric mixer beat sugar, eggs, crystalized ginger, orange peels and vanilla until creamy. In a medium bowl combine flour, pecans, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, ginger and salt. Gradually beat flour mixture into butter mixture, mix until well combined. With a large spoon, scoop and drop cookies 4 inches apart on a ungreesed cookie sheet. Flaten tops lightly and then spoon 1 tsp of pecan topping into the center of each unbaked cookie. Finally, bake cookie 12 to 13 minutes or until edges are just set. Let cool on pan 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to a cooking rack to cool completely. Drizzle cooled cookes with orange glaze. Makes about 3 dozen large cookies.
Cruse also submitted two of her secret cookie recipes for the Season's Best Cookie Contest.
2 cups of graham cracker crumbs
1 1/3 cup of Bordens Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk
1 1/3 cup of Borden's ready to use none such mince meat
Blend all ingredients together and turn into a well greased 9-by-13-by-2 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees until lightly browned (about 30 minutes) Let cool in pan before cutting into squares. Makes 24, 2 1/4 inch squares.
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
1 1/4 cups of packed, light brown sugar
2 jars (4 oz. each) of baby food strained carrots
1 large egg
1 Tlbs. of freshly grated orange peels
1/2 cup of fresh orange juice
1 tsp. of each, baking soda and ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. of each, salt and ground nutmeg
1/3 tsp. ground cloves
2 1/2 cup of All-Purpose flour
1 cup of chopped walnuts
For orange cream cheese icing:
3 oz. of 1/3 less fat cream cheese softened
2 Tlbs of softened butter
1 tsp. of freshly granted orange peels
2 Tlbs. of fresh orange juice
2 1/2 cups of confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Have baking sheet(s) ready. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with mixer on medium speed until creamy. Beat in the next nine ingredients (carrots through cloves) until well blended. Then, with mixer on low speed, beat in flour until blended. Next, stir in walnuts and drop by rounded tablespoon 2 inches apart onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 10 to 12 minutes until tops look dry. Let cool on baking sheet for 1 minute before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Icing: Beat cream cheese, butter, orange peels and juice until blended and smooth. Spread about 1 1/2 tsp. on each cookie and sprinkle with walnuts. Let icing set 1 to 2 hours.