I was first introduced to cherry flavoring via Hubba Bubba Bubble Gum. You could say I had a cherry crush (not like Orange Crush the soda, just a love of cherry). I couldn’t make a 5-pack of Wild Cherry last more than a day. Then there was a long intermission. In my late twenties, out of boredom from other Ben & Jerry flavors and an attempt to make a healthier selection, I made my first pintly purchase of Cherry Garcia ice cream (bing cherries and dark chocolate). Years later Cherry Coke followed suit. And now, in another winning cherry and chocolate combination, my kids and I uncovered Chewy Chocolate Chunk Cherry Cookies courtesy of Martha’s February issue, just in time for Valentine’s Day.
It’s a really simple recipe really. The sweetness of the cherries balances out the chocolate and the cherries keep the cookies moist. It’s a different twist on your traditional chocolate chip cookie to show those on your Valentine list you put a little thought and effort into the treat. I brought in my son to help measure and mix – including the fold-in technique (very important so as not to crush the cherries and chocolate) and my daughter to roll the dough and place on the baking sheet.
They both had the job of attentively watching them bake in real-time and tasting at our tea party. Present at the party was Ava in her sundress and wide-brimmed hat, Calvin with a smirk that said tea parties are not my thing and a t-shirt that would have read “I’m only here for the cookies,” and me in my Alice in Wonderland costume from three Halloweens ago. I mention this because I can’t say that I have ever worked in the kitchen in heels or a costume. It did get an eyebrow raise from my husband.
At half-past four, it was time to end the party and Part 1 of Valentine’s Day prep. We all agreed that the combo in the cookies was a good one and that cherry, indeed, is a flavor to savor. Now, would we want to share?
Part 2 will include the valentine care and card packages we’re scheming up. Family and adults will get the full-on cookie package and kids, through their valentine exchanges at their schools, will give non or low-in-sweet-treats valentines (if I can at all have a say it in) with homemade cards (if I can hold over over the super convenient store bought options).