A simple yet tasty cookie that is bound to be a crowd pleaser!
Chocolate Almond Shortbreads
Prep Time: 1 hr 15 min
Bake Time: 12-15 min per batch
- 3 Sticks (1 1/2 Cups) Unsalted Butter, Softened to Room Temperature
- 1 1/4 tsp Almond Extract
- 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
- 3 Cups All Purpose Flour
- Heaping 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1/4 Cup of Roasted Unsalted Almonds
- 1 Cup SemiSweet Chocolate Chips
Finely chop the Almonds and set aside to have at the ready.
In a large bowl beat the Butter and Almond Extract together for about 30 seconds until the Butter is very smooth. Sift in the Powdered Sugar. Starting on the lowest setting (unless you want your kitchen to look like the North Pole) slowly cream together the Sugar and Butter mixture for about a minute until smooth. Add the Flour and Salt and once again slowly mix until a dough comes together. Using a wooden spoon (or my favorite kitchen tool, your own hand) mix in the Almonds until well incorperated.
Lay out a large piece of plastic wrap on your work surface. Gather the cookie dough into a ball and place on the plastic. Shape the cookie dough into a log about 2 inches in diameter and 18 inches long. Wrap the log tightly in the plastic wrap. Give it a couple of gentle rolls against your work surface to smooth out any flat parts and refrigerate for at least an hour. I know, I know. You want these cookies and you want them NOW, forget waiting an hour! Trust me, the refrigeration step makes life so much easier. It firms up the butter which is what we want since we are cutting the log into slices. But hey, it’s your batch of cookies so if you wanna try slicing soft butter evenly then go ahead! I won’t be mad.
Towards the end of the the refrigeration period preheat your over to 350° F. Remove your cookie log, unwrap, and using a sharp chef’s knife cut slices about 1/4″ in thickness. Lay cookie slices out on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking sheet. Bake cookies for about 12-15 minutes until a light golden brown around the edges. Let the cookies cool completely on a rack (ugh, more waiting) before dipping.
For The Chocolate:
Place the chocolate chips in a heat-proof or microwave safe bowl. To melt in the microwave heat on high in 15 second bursts, stirring in between, until melted. To melt on the stovetop place a heat-proof bowl over a pot of gently simmering water, taking care that the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Melt the chocolate while stirring frequently.
You can take your now cooled cookies and either dip half of them in the chocolate, drizzle them with chocolate, splatter them with chocolate etc etc. Get creative here! Allow to the chocolate to set up on a piece of wax paper or just dive right in if you can wait no longer! Enjoy with coffee, tea, whiskey, or as is.
Yields about 40 cookies.
Notes and Thoughts
I needed to bake something for a couple of friend’s engagement party with little time for shopping or planning. Well, I didn’t need to, but I wanted to as I was sadly unable to attend. I thought naturally I would just bake some cookies, after all everyone loves cookies! I took a look around my kitchen to see what kind of ingredients I had on hand
to work with. Then I saw the kitchen jar full of powdered sugar and I had my solution: Shortbread Cookies. Ah, but what flavor? After a little more digging I found the tail end of a bag of chocolate chips and some lovely roasted almonds. Perfect.
Almond and chocolate is a fantastic flavor combo, certainly one of my favorites. I use quite a bit of almond extract in this recipe, but I also think that the extract I had on hand wasn’t the highest quality. If you have a better brand of extract you can probably reduce the amount to 1 tsp. Though go ahead and taste your dough to see if the almond flavor is as strong as you want it! There are no eggs in this recipe so it’s safe to do!
The beauty of shortbread is that it is a blank canvas for you to exercise your creativity! Feel free to play around with the basic recipe and create your own flavor combinations. Just omit the almonds, almond extract, and chocolate dipping and go to town! You could add orange zest and chopped dark chocolate, or toasted pecans and cinnamon, or earl grey tea and lavender extract, or just some simple vanilla bean. The possibilities are endless!
Cheers~ The Little But Fierce Gourmet