Simmer cranberries and water over medium heat until they are plump, about 15 minutes. Drain, reserving liquid. Add enough water to reserved liquid to measure ½ cup.
In bowl, mix shortening, sugar, eggs and vanilla until creamy. Stir in the ½ cup of reserved liquid. Add remaining ingredients and blend until mixed thoroughly. Portion cookie dough by the spoonful on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until done.