Have I mentioned how much I love cherry season? Oh yeah, I did, here. It’s still going strong, and I’ve been indulging as much as I can. I bought a basket on the weekend from a farm nearer the lake, north of here. It still amazes me how the micro-climates around the peninsula can produce such variety in the same fruits (not to mention some incredible wines). These cherries are super dark, and very juicy, but smaller than the ones that we bought west of here. They are still delicious, though.
Must use them all
Not wanting to waste any (which can happen when one is overcome with giddiness at the abundance of whatever is in season and buys too much), I’ve been looking for ways to use them that will allow us to both enjoy them and keep them a bit longer. Though to be fair, I don’t know if putting anything in a cookie can be called a method of preservation. They get eaten just as quickly.
Chocolate and cherry is one of my all time favourite combinations. I know people who love their chocolate dipped strawberries. They’re okay. Or chocolate raspberry coffee. You can keep that, thank you very much. Give me chocolate and cherries. Not those scary, dripping glowing things enrobed in waxy chocolate in boxes of Christmas treats, though I certainly enjoyed my fill as a kid (they seemed so *sophisticated*). I mean real cherries, with chocolate – chocolate ice cream, chocolate bars, hot chocolate, chocolate fudge… Just give me cherries and chocolate.
So when I decided that baking needed to happen, these cookies were first on my list. With a lovely background of cocoa goodness, and the playful sweetness of white chocolate chips, the cherries are like juicy gems of flavour. The almond extract helps to round everything out nicely, too. These are so good, I’m entering them in this Food Bloggers of Canada contest.
I don’t recommend storing these in sealed bags or air tight containers, since the moisture level of the cherries is so high. And let them cool thoroughly before enjoying, lest you burn your mouth on the hot juice.
Double Chocolate Cherry Chip Cookies
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 tsp. almond extract
3 tbsp. good quality cooca powder
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup coarsely chopped, pitted sweet cherries
Preheat oven to 350F.
Cream together the butter and sugars until smooth. Mix in the egg and extract. Scrape down the bowl and add in the cocoa, salt, baking soda and flour. Blend until just combined, and gently stir in the chocolate chips and cherries.
Drop by slightly rounded tablespoons onto a parchment lined baking sheet, giving them a good bit of space. Bake for 15-17 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack, which allows the bottoms to dry a little.
Makes about 20 large cookies