If I had to name my 10 favourites things in the world then cookies would be on the list right behind Ryan Gosling, Christmas and family (perhaps not in that exact order). Especially the über gooey, melt-in-your-mouth, flavour filled ones. I’ve posted a cookie recipe before which results in a batch of biscuits with all the aforementioned qualities, but I thought I’d polish it off with a touch of orangey festive flavour perfect to rustle up for friends, family or package nicely as a token gift for a fellow cookie monster. Oh, and they look like a squashed Christmas pudding. Almost to good eat? Not quite.

Sugar, Spice and All Things Nice Orange & Cinnamon Cookies 

You will need: 200g unsalted butter, 300g caster sugar, 1 large egg, the zest of 2 oranges and juice of 1/2 orange, 1 tsp orange extract, 1tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp mixed spice, 275g self-raising flour, 40g cocoa powder, 100g icing sugar, a splash of water, green and red roll-out icing (optional).

Add your butter into a bowl and whizz it in the microwave for a few seconds to soften, take out and add in the caster sugar. Mix with a spoon or electric whisk until creamy. Grate in the zest of one orange and then mix in half the juice of that orange with a teaspoon of orange extract. Crack in an egg and mix some more. Then throw in your dry ingredients: cinnamon, mixed spice, self-raising flour (no need to sift) and cocoa powder. If things get dry, add in a lug more orange juice. Line two trays with baking paper, scoop the mixture into 12 handfull size balls and place far apart on the tray. Pop in a preheated fan oven at 220°C (200°C for non-fan) for 10 minutes. While the cookies are in the oven make up your icing by mixing icing sugar, water and the zest of one orange together and make your holly and berries out of the coloured icing. The cookies will be super sloppy still when you remove them, but leave them to cool for around 30 minutes till they stiffen up. When they are cooled assemble your squashed Christmas pudding design and EAT.

I have to say that in the process of testing out recipes for this tweaked flavour I may now be restricted to elasticated waistbanded trousers. I also wholeheartedly recommend that they are best consumed on day of baking (though can be stored in an airtight container). Those two statements may be directly related…