Ok so I know these aren't technically cookies, but they are cookie-ish! Instead of a book review, this month Jennifer of Cooking for Comfort suggested a Christmas Cookie Exchange for the Kitchen Reader members. So while these aren't cookies they are definitely Christmassey and perfect for sharing.
I'm not sure where Rum Balls originate but there are as many different recipes as there are days in the year (I may be exaggerating slightly!). Basically if there is rum, chocolate and some sort of carb (either cake crumbs, biscuit crumbs or even weetbix) you have yourself a rum ball.
These make the perfect gift at Christmas time and are great to get the kids into as there is no baking involved. Perhaps just leave out the rum!! (cranberry juice would be a great alternative and you would end up with a choc-cranberry truffle).
Susan's Rum Balls
500g cake (a madeira or pound cake is perfect)
1/2 cup cocoa
1 cup dessicated coconut
1/2 dried cranberries
1 tin (approx 400g) condensed milk
2 tbs rum plus extra
1-2 cups dessicated coconut, extra
Roughly chop the cranberries and add to a small saucepan with the 2tbs rum and 1 tbs water. Bring to the boil then simmer until all the liquid is absorbed and the fruit is plump. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Tear the cake into rough chunks and add to the food processor with the cocoa. Blitz until the cake is in crumbs and the cocoa is evenly distributed.
Turn out the cake crumbs into a large bowl and add the coconut, cooled cranberries and the condensed milk. Mix thouroughly, adding extra rum if you find you need more liquid (an extra tablespoon or so will be plenty).
Roll into walnut sized balls, roll in the extra dessicated coconut then set on a tray. Refrigerate until required. These are best to make the day before you need them to allow the flavours to meld. Makes approx 30.