You know that February is the month that I want to make every thing I cook and bake heart shaped! It was the perfect moment to make these adorable Espresso Shortbreads I’ve been craving since Christmas time.
It really wasn’t that long ago since I enjoyed these delights, but it was time to get them made in cute heart shapes for all my sweet hearts! We arrived at my family’s adorable home in Ohio to my cousin taking trays and trays of cookies out of the oven. I felt almost as if I had arrived in a bakery. There were chocolate chip cookies and thumbprint cookies being baked on this day. My cousin, quite the avid baker, was taking each tray out with swift precision and ease and placing them throughout the kitchen to cool so she could add more to the oven. There were also ricotta cookies and chocolate crinkle cookies. But the cookie that I fell in love with were her espresso shortbreads!I have been told by some family members that I drink way too much espresso. Like, way too much! And I always come to my own defense explaining I only have my espresso in the morning and then one in the afternoon to pick me up a little. Don’t most people drink American coffee all day long in the office?
Are you shaking your head as I was wondering what in the world are volatile salts?? They were smelling salts and they were used as a leavening agent!
Updated from 2/1/16
- 1 cup 8 oz. cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
- 1/2 tsp. table salt
- 2 Tbs. espresso or coffee or tea decaf or regular
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
- In a small bowl, add the cocoa powder to the flour by whisking it together; set aside. Using a paddle attachment on your mixer on low speed, beat the butter and confectioner's sugar until smooth, about 1-2 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Add in the espresso, vanilla, and salt and beat until combined.
- Add the flour/cocoa powder mixture and mix on low speed until combined (about 3 minutes), making sure not to overmix the dough.
- Dump the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap and flatten into a disk. Chill for 30-60 minutes (or until the dough is firm enough to work with).
- On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to about 1/4 inch thick. Make sure you're rolling it out evenly so the cookies will bake evenly.
- Using a heart or other shape cookie cutter, cut out shapes as close to one another as possible. Use the scraps to roll out and cut more cookie shapes. Chill dough a little bit more if it becomes sticky. Arrange the cookies on two parchment-lined baking sheets and refrigerate until chilled, at least 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Bake the cookies until golden on the bottom and edges and pale to golden on top, 13-18 minutes.
- Cool and spread on some melted chocolate or Nutella. Add Maldon salt or sprinkles.