Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies


Shortbread cookies with espresso and chocolate in them? Yes, please!  The dough comes together quickly, then you flatten it into a gallon sized zipper bag and stick it in the fridge.  This method is genius!  When you're ready to bake, cut the bag off and slice the dough.  So easy!  I wasn't sure if it would be noticeable, but the cookies actually have a coffee flavor.  I keep a jar of instant espresso in my pantry for those random times I need it for baking.  You could use instant coffee, but the flavor won't be as intense.


I made these cookies for the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap and the Ohio Blogging Association Cookie Swap.  So if you're headed to the OBA party tonight, this is what you have to look forward to from my kitchen.

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap exchanges cookies between hundreds of food bloggers around the world.  Last year I participated in the first annual cookie swap with my Chewy Ginger Cookies.  If you want to be notified when 2013 registration is open, sign up here.  Thanks to Love and Olive Oil and The Little Kitchen for hosting.  Almost 600 bloggers participated, and over 20,000 cookies were mailed! Here's the collection of cookies sent: Recipe Round Up Part 1 and Part 2.

This year the GFBCS is raising money for Cookies for Kids' Cancer, and for every dollar donated OXO will match it.  *Update:  We raised over $4,400!*
I sent Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread cookies to A Half Baked Life, A Less Processed Life and This Momma Can Cook.  Out of all those bloggers I thought it was really funny that I got to send cookies to A Half Baked Life because she sent some to me last year.  What are the odds?!

These are the delicious goodies I received:

Thanks for the cookies Urban Sacred Garden (Chocolate Cranberry Shortbread), Addicted to Recipes (Chocolate Peppermint Crunch Cookies) and The Tasty tRuth (Honey Vanillla Coconut Macaroons)!


Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies
Yield: 42-49 cookies (depending on how much you spread the dough in the bag)

1 Tbsp instant espresso powder
1 Tbsp boiling water
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups flour
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped, or 3/4 cup store-bought mini chocolate chips
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting (optional)

Dissolve the espresso in the boiling water, and set aside to cool to tepid.

Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter and confectioners’ sugar together on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth. Beat in the vanilla and espresso, then reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, mixing only until it disappears into the dough. Don’t work the dough much once the flour is incorporated. Fold in the chopped chocolate with a sturdy rubber spatula.

Using the spatula, transfer the soft, sticky dough to a gallon-size zipper-lock plastic bag. Put the bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll the dough into a 9 x 10 1/2 inch rectangle that’s 1/4 inch thick. As you roll, turn the bag occasionally and lift the plastic from the dough so it doesn’t cause creases. When you get the right size and thickness, seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible, and refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours, or for up to 2 days.

Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.

Put the plastic bag on a cutting board and slit it open. Turn the firm dough out onto the board (discard the bag) and, using a ruler as a guide and a sharp knife, cut the dough into 1 1/2-inch squares. Transfer the squares to the baking sheets and carefully prick each one twice with a fork, gently pushing the tines through the cookies until they hit the sheet.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. The shortbreads will be very pale–they shouldn’t take on much color. Transfer the cookies to a rack.

If you’d like, dust the cookies with confectioners’ sugar while they are still hot. Cool the cookies to room temperature before serving.

   
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6 comments:

  1. Yum ... I confess, I finished these last night, and no one else even got to try them. ;) Oops.

    Love the method ... so easy! I'm all for less cleanup. ;) Thanks again for the sweet package!

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  2. We loved our Espresso Choc Chip Shortbread Cookies! I had a blast taking part in this exchange & will do it again next year. Have a merry Christmas & take care! :D

    ~This Mama Can Cook

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  3. I love the sneaky trick with the ziplock bag!! I wonder if you could flop the whole thing on a cookie sheet and score them before baking? I think I would like these partially dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with chopped coffee beans....

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    Replies
    1. The cookies do spread a tiny bit so I don't know well the scoring would work and still get a clean break after baking. I would be afraid that too many cookies would end up broken.

      Dipping in chocolate and chopped coffee beans sounds delicious! Or using crushed chocolate covered espresso beans instead of the chocolate chips for an extra boost of coffee flavor.

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