Many years ago, I happened to come across a bag of dried cherries at a gourmet shop. At the time, dried cherries were hard to find; whereas, these days my supermarket routinely has them in inventory. I bought the bag of dried cherries without really having any idea what I’d do with them besides eating them as a snack.
After eating half the bag, I decided I would use the rest of them to make cookies. Ah, but what kind of cookie? Do I need to reveal to you, once again, how long in the tooth I am by telling you that there were no computers, ergo no internet with Google searches? I looked through several of my cookbooks for a recipe, but nothing appealed to me, so I was left to my own devices.
I decided to take my then current favorite chocolate chip cookie and adapt it to use the cherries. It was a simple matter to swap the semisweet chocolate chips for the white chocolate chips. I threw in a cup of chopped walnuts and, of course, the cherries. I thought about swapping the vanilla for almond extract because the flavor goes so well with cherries. I discarded that idea in favor of adding some cinnamon instead. The combination came out so well that I have been making this cookie ever since. I keep thinking I’ll try the almond extract someday but haven’t gotten around to it yet. I have, however, used different chocolate chip cookie recipes as a base since I keep finding new ones that I like even better than some of the older ones in my collection.
These cookies are crunchy and chewy with a backdrop of caramel and cinnamon complementing the cherries and white chocolate. The wonderful flavors and textures make this cookie a real winner.
When anyone tries one of these white chocolate cherry chippers and asks for the recipe, I tell them they already have the recipe if they make chocolate chip cookies and a use little imagination! But then I tell them how to make it anyway.
White Chocolate Cherry Chippers
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 tbl. vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 cup white chocolate chips (For best taste, use Ghirardelli chips)
- 1 cup dried cherries
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.
Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon; set aside.
In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the whisked dry ingredients until just blended. Stir in the white chocolate chips, dried cherries, and chopped walnuts by hand using a wooden spoon.