Whipped Shortbread Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
1/4 cup red maraschino cherry
1/4 cup green maraschino cherry

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl and using an electric mixer, combine butter, flour, icing sugar and vanilla extract; mix until mixture is a smooth consistency.
Prepare cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Spoon out dough onto parchment lined cookie sheets by teaspoonfuls or by tablespoons for larger cookies, spacing about 2 inches apart.
Cut maraschino cherries into quarters and place one piece in the middle of each cookie, alternating with red and green cherries.
Bake in preheated 350 F oven for 13 to 15 minutes or until bottom of cookies are lightly browned, DO NOT OVERBAKE.
Remove from oven and let cool on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes.
Transfer onto wire racks to finish cooling.
Store in a container with a lid and separate each layer with wax paper.
NOTE: If you wish to add some flavor to the cookies, add 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract or almond extract.
Use sprinkles, half an almond or half a cashew or chocolate to the top of the cookies before baking.
A thumbprint in the cookie, filled with your choice of jam is very tasty.
It has been suggested that the cookies be refrigerated for at least 1/2 hour before baking for a different texture.

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