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"He Did Not Chop Down the Cherry Tree" Cookies

When I was in elementary school we were taught the legend that when George Washington was a child he was given an ax. He used it to cut down a cherry tree.  When confronted by his angry father little George said "I cannot tell a lie, I chopped down your cherry tree." His father was so proud and happy that he told the truth that he hugged him and forgave him.  I think that we were supposed to learn the lesson "don't lie", but then we grew up and found out that the story was not true. Hmmmm.... something is not quite right there! 

Anyway, since last Monday was President's Day and next Monday is George Washington's birthday, I thought that now would be the perfect time to try a new cherry cookie recipe that I pinned some time ago.  (Okay- I will use any excuse to try a new cookie recipe-especially cherry!) 

Cherry Almond Shortbread Cookies

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 Tablespoon maraschino cherry juice
2 cups all-purpose flour
16 maraschino cherries (drained and chopped)
Hershey Kisses, unwrapped. 

1. Using a mixer, beat the butter on high speed until creamy, about one minute.  With the mixer on medium speed, add the sugar, vanilla and almond extracts.  Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl as needed.  

2. With mixer running on high, slowly drizzle in the cherry juice.  

3. Beat for one minute on high. Turn the mixer off and pour the flour into the bowl.  Turn the mixer back on low and slowly beat until a very soft dough is formed, then add cherries, mixing on low, or by hand, just until the cherries are mixed in.  

4. Press the dough into a ball and tightly cover it with plastic wrap.  Place dough into the refrigerator to chill at least 4 hours, until firm.  This prevents the dough from spreading when baking. 

5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Shape about one tablespoon of dough into a ball.  

6. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until light brown around the edges. Cool the cookies on the cookie sheet for five minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool.  

7. Optional: When cookies are removed from the oven quickly pressed an unwrapped Hershey kiss in the middle. 

Printable Version

Somewhere on Pinterest I found recipes where Hershey Kisses were added to the cookies right after removing from them from the oven.  Yum! 

I am super excited that I now know how to make the recipe printable.  If you want to print out this recipe just click on "Printable Version" above. 

Thanks for stopping by today and Happy 284th Birthday to George Washington! 



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