Holly Drop Cookies
My mother-in-law was one of the best bakers I’ve ever met. She won ribbons at the state fair for her pies, decorated beautiful cakes for all occasions, and made plates of goodies at the holidays. A few years ago, I asked Jason what his favorite cookie was that she used to make, and he quickly told me it was a butter cookie with a maraschino cherry on top.
I didn’t have the original recipe, so I searched Pinterest for a recipe that sounded the same. I found one that I thought would work and it ended up being similar, or at least Jason thought they looked + tasted the same. The only problem was that they would fall apart when I’d try to take them off the cookie sheet. Not the end of the world, but they were basically useless for anything other than eating right out of the oven (I can’t complain too much about that…HA).
So, this year, I decided to do some asking, and my sister-in-law ended up having the original recipe…hooray! Not only did I get the recipe, but I had a Christmas gift idea too. I had my talented artist friend, Abby, hand-letter + illustrate the recipe and then framed it as a gift to Jason. I love surprises, and this was a big (emotional) one!
While this could be considered a Christmas cookie…I think it would be delicious + pretty for Valentine’s Day as well! I mean…I’m basically not going to turn down a cookie if you give it to me. I’m not a monster.
What You’ll Need:
½ c. butter
½ c. + 2 tbsp. shortening (I use butter-flavored)
1 c. powdered sugar
2 ½ c. flour
2 tsp. vanilla
1 c. nuts (full disclosure…I don’t add these)
1/3 c. maraschino cherries, halved
Mix all ingredients together in stand mixer (yep, easy).
Roll dough into a 1” ball and flatten with the bottom of a glass coated with sugar. I had to experiment with this part a bit and ended up spraying the bottom of a glass with cooking spray, dipping that into the sugar, and then pressing down the ball of dough (recoating with sugar each time).
Make a small indentation in the center of the cookie and press a cherry half in each one. If you decide to add the nuts, chop up both the cherries + nuts, mix together, and place on top of each cookie. One trick I’ve learned is to dry the cherries on a paper towel, so they don’t make the cookie mushy.
Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees F.
I’m so happy that I have the original recipe to use now and it can even hang in our house as a reminder of Jason’s mom! She was truly one of the nicest people, cared deeply for others, and had a great laugh. I think Phyllis would have laughed her ‘tee-hee’ many times watching me try to make these cookies, hopefully I can perfect the recipe just like she did.
- ½ cup Butter
- ½ cup + 2 tbsp. Shortening (I use butter-flavored)
- 1 cup Powdered Sugar
- 2 ½ cups Flour
- 2 tsp. Vanilla
- 1 cup Nuts *optional*
- 1/3 cup Maraschino Cherries, halved
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