Love chocolate covered cherries? Then you’ll love these cookies!

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The new ‘thing’ on Pinterest seems to be baking cookies with a Hershey’s Kiss in the center, which is a fabulous idea.  So … I thought, “Why not wrap rich cookie dough around a maraschino cherry & cover the cookie with melted semi-sweet chocolate”?  Yup – Yummy!

Here’s how you get that maraschino cherry in the center. Take a tablespoon of dough, flatten it and wrap dough around the cherry.  It’s fun and easy – as is dipping the cooled cookies in the melted chocolate.

You can make the cookie dough ahead and refrigerate it.  Recently I divided the dough in half, brought half  to my son’s house and made cookies with my grandchildren.  A week later I baked the other half and mailed those cookies to my godmother and uncle. (At the last minute… typical me.  It cost me almost $60.00 to make sure the package would get to Florida by Christmas..)

My grandchildren had fun forming snowmen and candy canes etc.  –  but the dough is far too soft to use for cut-out cookies.

small red heart

Yield – about 4 dozen cookies 

Oven at 350F      Bake cookies for 15 – 16 minutes – until bottoms are lightly browned.  (The cookies themselves will be very, very lightly browned at the edges.)

Ingredients and Method

  • 1 1/2 cups butter  ++ Three sticks allowed to come to room temperature   ++ Here’s a ‘cheat’ – place the three sticks of butter on a small plate. Microwave in 10 second increments. DO NOT overdo it …. or you’ll end up with melted butter. Two times at ’10 seconds each’ should do it.     ; o )
  • 1 (8 oz.) package softened cream cheese
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar   ++ Also know as ‘powdered sugar’ or ‘icing sugar
  • 1 egg at room temperature  ++ I  put the egg in some warm water for a minute
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • red maraschino cherries, drained on a paper towel
  • 1 (12 oz.) bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tbs. shortening

Method

In a large mixing bowl, beat 1 1/2 cups softened butter, 8 oz. softened cream cheese, 2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar, 1 room-temperature egg, 2 tsp. vanilla extract and 1 tsp. almond extract until thoroughly blended, then continue beating for another minute.

Add 4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 tsp. baking powder and 1/4 tsp. salt.  Mix until thoroughly combined.

Dough will be sticky, so I suggest dividing dough into two parts, wrapping in plastic wrap & refrigerating for about 20 minutes.

++ If preparing dough ahead – divide dough into two parts, wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate. Remove dough and let it warm up a bit before you begin forming cookies.

Using a measuring tablespoon, scoop out a tablespoon of dough and flatten it in your hand a bit. Place a maraschino cherry (don’t forget to put the cherries on a paper towel to dry a bit) in the center and fold up the dough to cover the cherry.  Roll the dough in your hand to form a rough ball.  Place balls about two inches apart on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.

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Bake cookies for 15 – 16 minutes in a 350F oven until cookies are a lightly browned on the bottom.  Cookies will be very, very lightly browned at the edges.  Remove cookies immediately and allow to cool on a rack.

++ Here’s what I learned… if you pick up a cookie to see if the bottom is browned and it falls apart… it’s not ready yet!   ; o )

Melting the Semi-Sweet Chocolate

Place 1 bag (12 ounces) of semi-sweet chips and  2 Tbs shortening in a microwavable bowl.  Melt chocolate at either half-power or the defrost setting.  Keep checking –  and stirring  – until chocolate is melted and well blended.  Dip each cookie ‘face down’ into the melted chocolate and give it a little shake. Set cookie on rack – repeat.  Enjoy!

++  Try not to overheat chocolate or it may harden up.  Here’s h.e.lp. if that ever happens to you – http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/977613/in-a-pickle-how-to-salvage-overheated-chocolate

All the cookies but two made it into the Christmas package I sent to my aunt and uncle in Florida.  I  dare YOU to eat just one…!!

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8 thoughts on “Love chocolate covered cherries? Then you’ll love these cookies!

  1. Cecile, my dear father would have loved these cookies. I would’ve had to bake some today rather than add them to my must-make-soon list! Did you have fun making your French Canadian Meat Pies? I made just one. My husband really appreciated it.

    • Hi Jean! Actually, at this very moment I’m baking three of my meat pies. My twin sons and their families, my twin brother and his family = and me – are celebrating Roy Christmas today. i ran out of time to make cookies. I’ll do it tonight with my grandchildren. It’ll be chaotic but fun.
      How long ago did you lose your father? My – French Canadian – husband died nine years ago. he was born in Quebec and did he ever love French Canadian food!
      Happy New Year. So glad you took the time to comment. ; o )

  2. I can remember my first box of chocolate covered cherries…I loved them. I know I would enjoy your cookies. I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas day.

    • Hi Karen – Joyeux Noel !! My first ‘real’ boyfriend when I was 15 used to buy me Choc. Covered Cherries… he sure did love me !! ; o ) We still have some snow here in Western Massachusetts, so it was (for the most part…) a White Christmas. My son Mike will be coming here for what we call our Roy Christmas late this year… he and his family won’t arrive until the 29th. So I’ll be busy baking Christmas cookies and French Canadian Meat Pies this week. I hope you and your husband have a wonderful New Year’s Eve!

    • Hi Margie! Yes, I believe they will be very happy. They’ve already received something I ordered online… but they’re ‘good’ and won’t eat any of it until Christmas. I included several things for them in the package – my aunt and uncle are always sooo cute and sooo excited with anything I send them. They’re both so sweet. But they’re also very smart – LOL – because their happiness brings me great joy – I’m always sending them things!!
      My aunt is 91 and still gorgeous.. and my wonderful uncle is not very much younger than she is… so I will only be able to spoil them for a short time more…) Thanks so much for taking time out of your busy day to comment!! ; o )

    • I’m soo glad you like the look of my cookies. I was really pleased with how they came out. Merry Christmas to you Bernideen!! ; o ) Please let me know if you ever have a chance to make them… and if you have any suggestions/questions etc. Get this – when I woke up this morning, I realized I hadn’t included the directions for how to shape the dough around the cherry… as you can imagine, that was the first thing I took care of this morning!! LOL

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