Friday, December 9, 2011

White Chocolate Cherry Shortbread Cookies

I first saw these cookie on pinterest.  Can I just say, I love pinterest!  Then, looking at the bhg website, where the recipe was originally found, I saw they got 4 out of 5 stars, which did not impress me.  But some people raved about them.  I read the reviews and made a few adjustments based on the bad reviews.
I am not a huge shortbread fan, but these cookies are delicious.  The almond flavor and the white chocolate/cherry combination is really fantastic.  They are buttery and just the right amount of sweet.  My kids, who all are not fans of maraschino cherries, all ate these and were surprised that they liked them so much.  But, I was not surprised.  I don't think my kids have ever met a cookie they didn't like. ;-) One note:  Do no skip the kneading step.  Makes it all a lot easier, and doesn't take but a minute.

 adapted from:

  • 1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained and finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cold butter
  • 2 tsp cherry juice
  • 1 pkg ghirardelli white chocolate chips, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons shortening
  • White nonpareils, sprinkles and/or red edible glitter (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Dice cherries.
 In a large bowl, combine flour and sugar. Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in drained cherries and 4 ounces (2/3 cup) of the chopped chocolate (I ran a knife through the white chocolate chips. Stir in almond extract and, if desired, food coloring. Knead mixture until it forms a smooth ball.
Shape dough into 3/4-inch balls. Place balls 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Using the bottom of a drinking glass dipped in sugar, flatten balls to 1-1/2-inch rounds.
Bake in preheated oven for 10 to 13 minutes or until centers are set. Cool for 1 minute on cookie sheet. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.
In a small saucepan, combine remaining 8 ounces white chocolate and the shortening. Cook and stir over low heat until melted. Dip half of each cookie into chocolate, allowing excess to drip off. If desired, roll dipped edge in nonpareils and/or edible glitter. Place cookies on waxed paper until chocolate is set. Makes about 60.

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