Indulging in the joy of holiday baking has always been one of my most cherished traditions. The anticipation of that delightful aroma permeating the house, the precious moments spent with loved ones, and the joy of sharing our creations with others make this season truly special.
As the holiday season draws near, I eagerly start planning my baking endeavors. Each year, I strive to add one or two new types of cookies to our beloved traditions. My passion for baking was instilled in me by my mother when I was just a child, and those memories remain close to my heart. Passing down this culinary legacy to my own children has been incredibly fulfilling.
Among the plethora of recipes in my repertoire, one particular gem holds a special place – a delightful discovery from years ago. Shortbread cookies have always held a special allure for me with their heavenly buttery essence. However, this recipe took it to new heights with the delightful addition of cherries and chocolate. The colors alone are enough to captivate anyone, but once you take a bite, you’ll be utterly hooked.
Imagine the bliss of sinking your teeth into a buttery shortbread, its pure goodness complemented by the sweetness of cherries and the indulgence of chocolate. This combination is nothing short of glorious, and it has become a beloved part of our traditional holiday cookie assortment.
I extend an invitation to you, dear reader, to join in the magic of these delectable cookies. I am certain that if you give them a chance, you too will be won over, and they will quickly become a staple in your own holiday baking repertoire. Embrace the spirit of the season, create lasting memories with loved ones, and spread the joy by sharing these delectable treats with friends and family. Happy baking!
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup maraschino cherries-chopped – it is important to spread cherries on paper towel after chopping to get all the extra liquid out or you can use dried maraschino cherries
2/3 cup chocolate chips (mini or regular)
Chop cherries and place on paper towel and cover with paper towel to remove extra liquid.
In a mixing bowl, combine flour and salt, set aside.
In a larger mixing bowl, or stand mixer, cream together 1 cup unsalted the softened butter with 1/2 cup powdered sugar. Mix in the vanilla.
Add flour with salt mixture and mix on low until larger clumps begin forming.
Using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon, gently stir in chocolate chips and maraschino cherries.
Form the dough into a log and press it together well or it will crumble when you slice the cookies (the log should be about 2 inches thick) Wrap it in the plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 1-2 hour.
After chilling the dough, preheat the oven to 325°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Unwrap the chilled log and cut slices 1/4 or 1/3 inch thick – if the slices crumble, press it back together with your hands. Place the slices onto the baking sheet with one inch of space between.
Bake the cookies 18-20 minutes and rotate the pan after 10 minutes. They will turn golden on the bottom and the top will be set.
Let them cool for 10 minutes on a baking sheet before carefully transferring them to a rack to cool completely.
• Due to the high butter content, having the dough well chilled is important for the cookies to hold their shape. After cutting the slices, you can place the baking tray in the freezer for 5-10 minutes, so they are nice and cold before baking.
• You can freeze the dough after preparation. When you have formed the dough log, wrap it with cling film and place in a freezer bag. Store in freezer for 3-4 months. No need to defrost at all before baking – just cut the dough into slices and bake immediately.
The Holiday Maraschino Cherry Shortbread Cookies truly embody the essence of holiday baking at its finest. These buttery delights, adorned with vibrant cherries and decadent chocolate, have found a permanent place in our hearts and traditions. As we gather in the warmth of our homes, the sweet aroma fills the air, and the joy of creating memories with loved ones permeates every moment. The magic of these cookies lies not only in their delicious taste but also in the shared experience of baking and giving them as heartfelt gifts to others. They represent the spirit of the season, bringing people together and spreading happiness in every bite. So, as the holiday season approaches, let us embrace the joy of baking these delightful treats, cherishing the memories we create, and savoring the joy they bring to all who taste them. Happy holidays, and may the Holiday Maraschino Cherry Shortbread Cookies continue to be a cherished part of your festive traditions for years to come.