White Chocolate Cherry Almond Shortbread Cookies

Cheery cherry cookies dipped in white chocolate are slightly chewy inside, and festive for Valentine's Day, Christmas, baby showers or any time of year!
Cherries and white chocolate cookies!
Cherries and white chocolate cookies!
Cherries and white chocolate cookies!

PREP TIME

20

minutes

TOTAL TIME

40

minutes

SERVINGS

48

servings

PREP TIME

20

minutes

TOTAL TIME

40

minutes

SERVINGS

48

servings

Ingredients

  • 1/2

    cup maraschino cherries, drained and finely chopped, reserve 2 tablespoons of liquid from cherries

  • 2 1/2

    cups all-purpose flour

  • 1/2

    cup sugar

  • 1

    cup cold butter

  • 12

    ounces white chocolate baking squares with cocoa butter, finely chopped

  • 2

    teaspoons almond extract

  • 2

    drops red food coloring

  • 2

    teaspoons shortening

  • White nonpareils, sprinkles, and/or red edible glitter (optional)

Directions

Preheat oven to 325°F. Spread cherries on paper towels to drain well reserving 2 tablespoons of cherry liquid for later. In a large bowl, combine flour and sugar. Using a pastry blender (or 2 forks), cut in the butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs. You could also use a food processor. Stir in drained and chopped cherries and 4 ounces (2/3 cup) of the chopped white chocolate. Stir in the 2 tablespoons reserved cherry liquid, almond extract, and food coloring. Mixture will be very dry and look like crumbs. Don't worry. That's normal. Using your hands, knead mixture until it forms a smooth ball. Shape dough into 3/4-inch balls. The cookies do not spread much so make sure your balls are well formed. Having slightly damp hands helps here. 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 12 minutes or until centers are set. Do not overbake! 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. You could also do this in the microwave, melting in 30 second intervals stirring in between. Dip half of each cookie into chocolate, allowing excess to drip off. If desired, roll dipped edge in sprinkles and/or edible glitter. Place cookies on waxed paper until chocolate is set. Storage: Layer cookies between waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

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