Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Cherry Chocolate Clusters

I got this recipe out of our local paper a few weeks ago, with a couple tweaks of my own. These are really fast and easy to make (about 30 min.) and OMG are they good. As in, I could eat an entire batch in one sitting all on my own good. The original recipe called for dried cranberries and dates, both of which I dislike. Thankfully, you can find a wide array of dried fruit options at your local grocery store. I opted for Sun-maid's Goldens and Cherries -- a combination of dried cherries and golden raisins -- which I highly recommend. I think the Tropical Trio (pineapple, mango and papaya) would also be good with this recipe (except then you'd have to call them tropical clusters. *wink* )

(Makes about 5 dozen)

1-pound package cream-filled chocolate cookies such as Oreos
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
11-1/2 oz bag dark chocolate chips
1-1/2 cup dried fruit
30 candied cherries, halved ~or~ powdered sugar for garnish

Line baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper and set aside.

Place cookies in large zip-close plastic bag and use rolling pin to crush cookies into crumbs. Be sure to crush completely! Set bag aside.

Combine butter, chocolate chips and corn starch in large bowl. Microwave for 1 to 1-1/2 minutes, stirring every 20-30 seconds until mixture is melted and smooth.

Stir in dried fruit, then the cookies.

Using a melon baller or spoon, scoop out 1-tablespoon balls (about an inch in diameter) and drop on to lined baking sheet. Top each with half of a candied cherry or sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Cover and store in refrigerator.

I guarantee these will be scooped up fast, so if you plan on making them for a holiday gathering you may want to double the recipe. Don't say I didn't warn you! *grin*

1 comment:

Jana said...

Omigosh, Heather. This sounds terribly yummy. Ima hafta try it.