Sweet cherry pie

No lie: Celebrate Presidents Day with a homemade cherry pie. A great fruit pie is perfection made simple, and even George would appreciate that. (Los Angeles Times/Gary Friedman)

Let the historians debate whether George Washington chopped down a cherry tree. We offer a better -- and sweeter -- way to celebrate Presidents Day.

Cherry Chocolate Kisses

Yield: Makes: 4 dozen cookies

Ingredients: 1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup margarine
2 teaspoons maraschino cherry liquid
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3-4 drops red food coloring
2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained and chopped
48 chocolate kisses, unwrapped

Heat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine powdered sugar, butter, cherry liquid, almond extract and food coloring. Add flour and salt and mix well. Stir in cherries. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place two inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake at 350 for 8 to 10 minutes, or until edges are light golden brown. Remove from oven and immediately top each cookie with a candy kiss, pressing down firmly. Remove from cookie sheets.

Per serving: 92 calories, 5 grams fat, 2 grams saturated fat, 1 gram protein, 10 grams carbohydrate, trace fiber, 1 milligram cholesterol, 28 milligrams sodium Schubert family

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sweet cherry pie

Total time: 1 1/2 hours, plus cooling time
Servings: Makes 1 (9-inch) pie