Wednesday, December 21, 2011

White Chocolate Cherry Shortbread

These will certainly get you in the holiday spirit.  Aren't they pretty?  Add to that a sweet, flavorful shortbread and you've got a winner.  The shortbread gets a little softness to it's texture from the sweet cherries and the white chocolate is a nice accent.  These lovelies will look great on Santa's plate and even better, you're holiday guests will like the fruit and chocolate combination.

I found this recipe at Better Recipes (formerly Mixing Bowl), posted by judyjellybean.  They were easy to make and make a lot!  These would be a good for a cookie exchange.  After baking, I started dipping the cookies in melted chocolate and nonpareils, but ran out of chocolate (because I didn't read the recipe and only bought one package).  When Dave taste-tested, he said not to worry about dipping the rest.  Since the cookie already has white chocolate in it, he felt the addition dipping overpowered the cookie without adding anything, and then you couldn't enjoy the cherry flavor.  What can I say?  The man knows cookies.  Make your own choice, I left mine half with and half without.

Cookie Swap Update: This is pretty funny.  The third package I received came from Cait at The Patriotic Baker.  Look familiar?  Cait dipped her White Chocolate Cherry Shortbread Cookies in white chocolate and milk chocolate. Even though I made these too, still visit Cait's blog because the story of her kitchen crisis made me think she's a kindred spirit, what with my own mishaps and all.

White Chocolate Cherry Shortbread


1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar, plus extra for flattening
1 cup butter, cold
12 ounces white chocolate baking squares, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
red food coloring
white and/or red nonpareils or edible glitter, optional

Finely chop cherries and spread onto paper towels to drain well.  Note: I put a dish towel under the paper towels to soak up the additional moisture and keep the juice from staining my counters.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour and 1/2 cup of sugar.  Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs.

Stir in drained cherries and 4 ounces (about 2/3 cup) chopped white chocolate.  Stir in almond extract and food coloring.  Note: I wanted a slightly pink shade marbled with the white, so I only used a few drops.  Use as much or as little as you like.  Form the mixture into a ball and knead until smooth. 

Shape dough into 3/4 inch balls or use a small cookie scoop (be careful not to overfill the scoop) and place balls onto a parchment or Silpat lined cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.

Using the bottom of a glass dipped in remaining sugar, flatten balls to about 1 1/2 inches around.

Bake at 325 degrees F for 10-12 minutes or until centers are set.  Be careful not to overbake; you don't want brown edges ruining your pretty color.

Cool on pan for 1 minute before removing to wire racks to complete cooling.

Once completely cool, melt remaining 8 ounces of chocolate either in a double boiler or the microwave, stirring until smooth. 

Dip half of each cookie into chocolate, remove excess and then roll edges in nonpareils or edible glitter.  Place dipped cookies on waxed paper until set.

Makes 5 dozen cookies.

Happy Baking,
The Cookie Princess

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1 comment:

  1. Glad you liked them! We have been addicted to them here.