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Cookies without Nuts
Italian Maraschino cherry cookies
Cherry Biscotti (using butter, icing sugar and almond extract, dipped in egg yolk, topped with Maraschino cherries)
Originated from: Italy
Occasion: Any time
Contributed by: Adapted from an Italian cookbook published in the 1960s

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for batter*
2 1/2 cups flour
2/3 cup icing sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Magic baking powder
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
2 medium eggs
2 1/2 teaspoons [artificial] sweet almond extract

For topping
2 egg yolks, beaten
Maraschino cherries, drained & cleaned of all excess liquid or syrup; cut in halves

*Makes about 3 dozen cookies


Mix flour, sugar, salt and baking powder together.

Cut butter into the mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.

In a separate bowl beat eggs. Add almond extract.

Add the eggs to the flour mixture and work into a medium-soft dough (If it's too wet add a touch of flour, if it's too dry, a touch of milk).

Take about a tablespoon of the dough and shape into a small ball.

Dip the dough-ball in the beaten egg yolks and place on the greased cookie sheet (or one lined with parchment paper).

Make a depression in the center of the dough-ball with thumb and place 1/2 Maraschino cherry in thumb print depression.

Continue until all the dough is used up, placing the cookies about 1 inch apart.

Bake at 375 F degrees until golden brown -- about 8 to 10 minutes.


Store in appropriate container; keep in the fridge until needed.


These cookies are easy to do, plus they taste good, look good, and they're relatively cheap -- four reasons to make them for oneself. Or for a bake sale. Other similar Italian nut-free cookies that are topped with Maraschino cherries also have the same benefits, and those that include orange juice in the recipe, generally have a really nice all-natural flavor. By employing some of the methods used in this recipe -- i.e, by shaping the dough into a ball and then making a dent in the uncooked cookie dough with one's thumb and then placing the halved cherry in the depression -- the end result will be quite satisfying. The cookies should be (If nothing went wrong, 'cause lots of things can go wrong when baking cookies) as appealing to the eye, as is their taste to the mouth. Comments and photo: Mary Melfi.

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