Missing Santa’s Whiskers

December 17, 2006

My favorite Christmas cookie of all time (other than Spritz with a little Red-Hot on top) is Santa’s Whiskers, a butter cookie with chopped maraschino cherries inside, rolled in coconut and baked.

Since I promised myself that I wouldn’t go overboard with the not-GF cookies this year (so far, we have N-GF sugar cookies dipped in chocolate and the cookie dough truffles), I pouted a bit. But then it occurred to me that my favorite parts of that cookie are the coconut and the cherries. So why not make a coconut cookie with a cherry on top?

Macaroons

1-14 oz bag sweetened flaked coconut
3/4 cup sugar
4 egg whites
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 jar of maraschino cherries

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Put the egg whites in a bowl; add the vanilla and almond extracts. Whisk together until the egg whites are foamy. Add the sugar; whisk again. Pour in the coconut and stir until the coconut is completely covered with egg white mixture.

Drain the jar of maraschino cherries; dump them out onto paper towels and pat them dry.

Drop the coconut mixture by teaspoonfuls onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Cut the cherries in half; place a half-cherry on the top of each cookie.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the cookies are firm and light brown. Cool on the cookie sheet for a couple of minutes before moving them to a cooling rack.

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