I'm not afraid to admit it: I love Valentine's Day.
I spent the better part of my insanely awkward teenage years wishing I had a Valentine, and yet still celebrating the holiday with my equally awkward girlfriends. We embraced our glasses-wearing, brace-faced, frizzy-haired selves, and reveled in V-Day slumber parties that involved lots of raw cookie dough, prank phone calls, and late-night viewings of "Loveline with Dr. Drew."
I was the classic dorky teenager.
Today, I'm fortunate enough to have secured a somewhat permanent, and exceptionally stellar Valentine in my life. This guy draws me pictures of stick figures, cleans off my KitchenAid stand mixer, and warms up my car every morning. He also puts up with my hideous singing voice, my resistance to putting clean dishes back in the cabinet, and my minor obsession with Coldstone Creamery's Cake Batter ice cream.
To thank my sweet dude for all the ways he shows he cares, I baked my way to his heart. This year, it came in the form of Chocolate-Dipped Cherry Shortbread Cookies.
Buttery. Flaky. Pink. And chock full o' love.
These little cookies are subtly sweet and just plain precious. Semi-sweet chocolate was a perfect match, but I imagine that white chocolate or dark chocolate would go equally as well.
So, whether your Valentine is your significant other or your best friend, your mom or your favorite co-worker--there's always someone out there who could use a little lovin' from you.
Bake up some Cherry Heart Cookies for them this weekend. And be grateful you don't have braces anymore.
Chocolate-Dipped Cherry Shortbread Hearts
(recipe from Taste of Home)
These cookies look like the essence of Valentine's Day. Pink + Chocolate + Hearts. Bonus: They taste awesome and buttery!
- 1 - 1/4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
- 3 TBSP sugar
- 1/2 cup cold butter, cubed
- 1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained and chopped
- 1 TBSP cold water
- 1/2 tsp. almond extract
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 TBSP butter
1) Preheat oven to 325 degrees and coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
2) In a mixing bowl, combine the flour and sugar. Cut in butter and mix with a fork until crumbly. Gently add in cherries, water, and extract--be gentle! Shortbread can be tricky :) Feel free to add a dash more of water to hold the dough together if you need to.
3) On a lightly floured surface, gently roll/pat the dough out to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut using small heart cookie cutters and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, or until lightly browned. Allow to cool on a cooling rack.
4) In a double boiler, melt the chocolate chips and 1 TBSP butter. Dip half of each cookie in the chocolate and place on wax paper to cool. Give to your Valentine.