From: Carol Sprenger
Yield: About 40 cookies
Prep Time: 1 Hour
Cook Time: 40 minutes total
Difficulty Level: Medium
- 1 cup butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup ground almonds
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 16 oz jar of maraschino cherries
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1/4 cup of the reserved maraschino cherry juice
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 14 oz bag sweetened shredded coconut flakes, finely chopped (I use a food processor and pulse about 15 times until finely diced)
- About 1 hour before your start, drain the maraschino cherries in a colander, saving the juice. Leave draining in colander for 1/2 hour. Then place on a large section of paper towels, and place another layer of paper towels on top and pat dry. Leave for 1/2 hour on paper towels to dry.
- Preheat oven to 350°. Line two half sheet pans with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
- Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in milk and extracts. In another bowl, whisk flour, ground almonds, and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture.
- Take 2 teaspoon of dough, flatten slightly in your palm, and place a cherry in the middle. Roll the dough around the cherry and roll between your palms until it forms a nice circle. Place approximately 1.5 in. apart on baking sheet, you’ll fit 20 on a sheet. Bake until bottoms are browned, 18-20 minutes. Rotate the pans at 9 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool.
- Stir together confectioners’ sugar, cherry juice, almond extract, and then enough milk to achieve a smooth dipping consistency. Dip cookies in the liquid mixture, shake off excess, then roll in coconut. Place on waxed paper-lined half sheet pan; let stand until set. I like to place a pan filled with the finished cookies in the fridge for 5-10 minutes to ‘set’ the glaze.
These are a little better if they sit for a day or two prior to eating. You can alternate green and red maraschino cherries if desired for a more Christmas-y look.