Have you ever visited D.C. in the springtime?
If you have, you know all about the cherry blossoms. The trees are beyond gorgeous, with little delicate pink blossoms sprinkled all over the tidal basin. It’s so lovely. It’s also mega-crowded. The tourists come from everywhere to see the blossoms, and it’s almost impossible to walk. People just shuffle along, elbow to elbow, taking awkward selfies.
Still, cherry blossoms in D.C. mean spring, warm breezes, and fun cookie flavors. How could I not try to put all that cherry blossom aura into a cookie? So I did.
In general, there’s a lot of excitement in the air. I teach high school seniors, and their final exams are next week. If they didn’t mentally check out weeks ago, you can bet they’re long gone by now. Some of them stop turning in homework or coming to class with a shamelessness that would shock their parents, if they knew. If.
Every year, I sit through graduation as multiple emotions assail me. I get hit with good feelings, like pride and flat-out happiness, but I also get annoyed sometimes at the kids who cross the stage who gave everything minimal to no effort. I wonder if they’ll keep doing that, or if they’ll learn to take the chances they have and treasure them.
In the end, though, I try to focus on the positive. Everyone looks nice, the ceremony is celebratory, and best of all, there are cherry blossom cookies in the world!
These are soft-baked cookies with Nestle bling. Not only are they filled with Nestle cherry-filled chocolate chips, but they’re also studded with spring color chocolate chips. Aren’t they cute? I’m all about cute.
A few weeks ago, a student made a cookie recipe from my blog and as soon as I saw the cookies, I knew she’d broken the cardinal rule: chill the dough. Do not skip this step! It’s vital. Also, subbing in some almond extract for vanilla is key to giving these cookies their distinct flavor. The almond complements the cherry perfectly.
It’s tourist season here in D.C., which coincides with graduation, spring, and all things warm and wonderful. Enjoy some cherry blossom cookies! It’s a lot easier than fighting the crowds at the tidal basin.
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 and 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup Nestle cherry-filled chocolate chips
1/2 cup Nestle spring edition chocolate chips
- Combine the melted butter, brown sugar, and white sugar together until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the egg and the egg yolk, incorporating both fully. Finally, add the vanilla and almond extracts.
- In a small bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add the mixture to the wet ingredients and mix well. Fold in the cherry-filled chocolate chips and spring edition chocolate chips.
- Cover the dough and chill anywhere from 3 hours to overnight.
- When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350. Line cookie sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
- Using about 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of dough, form tall mounds and place them about 2 inches apart on your cookie sheets. Bake for 11-12 minutes. Do not leave them in any longer!
- Cool cookies completely. Store in an airtight container. NOTE: Cookies are MUCH better on the second day!