We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Cookie Recipe #197 - Marbled Cherry Brownies

Brownies with a cream cheese and chopped maraschino cherries filling make for a super treat.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup (1 stick)butter, melted, 1/3 cup cocoa, 2 eggs, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 3 ounces cream cheese, softened, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/4 teaspoon almond extract, 1/3 cup chopped maraschino cherries, well drained, 1-2 drops red food coloring (optional).

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan. Make the Cherry Cream Filling as follows: In small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and 1/4 cup sugar until blended. Add egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and almond extract; beat well. Stir in cherries and food coloring, if desired; set aside.

Melt butter in microwave; stir in cocoa until well blended; allow to cool slightly.

In mixing bowl, beat eggs until foamy. Gradually add sugar and vanilla, beating until well blended. Stir together flour, baking powder, and salt; add to egg mixture. Add cocoa mixture and stir until well blended.

Spread half of chocolate batter into prepared pan; cover with Cherry Cream Filling.
Drop spoonfuls of remaining chocolate batter over filling. With knife, gently swirl chocolate batter into filling for a marbled effect.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes or until brownies begin to pull away from sides of pan. Cool; cut into squares. Cover and refrigerate any leftover brownies.

Makes 16 brownies.

"Hershey's Chocolate Lover's Cookbook", Brimar Publishing Inc., Montreal, Canada, 1993.

Cookies Rule!!!

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