Chocolate-Dipped Espresso Shortbread Cookies
1 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into .5" pieces
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. table salt
2.25 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. finely ground espresso coffee beans
9 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 Tbsp. vegetable shortening
[Note: Melting chocolate with shortening helps the chocolate set without the need to temper it. After a day or two, the cookies may look spotty. You can omit the shortening and the dipping and instead drizzle on plain melted chocolate.]
Line two baking sheets with parchment.
With a stand mixer bowl fitted with a paddle attachment or in a large mixing bowl, combine the butter,sugar and salt.
Mix on low speed until the butter combines with the sugar, but isn't perfectly smooth - 1 to 2 minutes.
Add the flour and the ground espresso and mix on low speed, scraping the bowl frequently, until the dough has just about pulled together - about 3 minutes -- don't overmix!
On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to about .25" thickness; aim for a uniform thickness to ensure even backing. Using a 1.5" heart-shaped (or other shape) cooking cutter, cut out shapes as close to one another as possible.
Press the scraps together, roll them out, and cut out more cookies.
Arrange cookies on prepped baking sheet and refrigerator until well-chilled, at least 20 minutes.
Heat the oven to 300F.
Bake the cookies until the tops look dry and the color has darkened slightly - 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on how gold you like them.
For the most even baking, swap the positions of the baking sheet and rotate them.
Let the cookies cook ona rack before dipping them.
Set a sheet of parchment/wax paper on counter. Put the chocolate and shortening in a small heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a pan of simmering water. Melt the chocolate, stirring, until it's smooth and warm; don't let it get hot!
Dip half of each cookie into chocolate.
Set the cookies on the parchment and let the chocolate set up at room temp for 2 hours.
Yields 7 dozen 1.5" heart-shaped cookies
Pairs Well With
I have yet to try this out, but I was drooling during my plane ride as I read about it in "The Best of Fine Cooking: Chocolate (Winter 2006)" - YUM!!!