52 Weeks of Cookies (Week 6): Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread


I made these espresso shortbread once in med school to give out as part of Christmas cookie boxes and remember being unable to stop snacking on them. So when I wanted to bake cookies for a coffee-loving couple friend of mine to welcome their new baby, these immediately came to mind. They're a little more involved than a drop cookie, since you have to roll them out, refrigerate them, and cut them into squares, but Deb's suggestion to roll them out in a gallon bag is genius. They make melt-in-your-mouth shortbread that my husband couldn't stop snacking on as well.

Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread

(Recipe from Smitten Kitchen)

  • 1 tbsp instant espresso powder
  • 1 tbsp boiling water
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened to room temp
  • 2/3 cup (80 grams) confectioner's sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 cups (250 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup storebought mini chocolate chips or 4 oz (115 grams) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

  1. Dissolve the espresso in the boiling water and set aside to cool. 
  2. Working with a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat the butter and confectioner's sugar together on medium speed for 3 minutes until the mixture is very smooth. 
  3. Beat in the vanilla, espresso, and salt, and then reduce the mixer to low and add the flour, mixing only until it disappears into the dough (don't overmix!). Fold in the chocolate. 
  4. Transfer the soft, sticky dough into a gallon-sized ziploc bag. Put the bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll out the dough into a 9" x 10.5" rectangle that is about 1/4" thick. As you roll, turn the bag occasionally and lift the plastic from the dough so it doesn't cause creases. When you get to the right size and thickness, seal the bag, pressing out excess air, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days. 
  5. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment. 
  6. Put the plastic bag on a cutting board and cut open along the seams. Turn the firm dough out on the cutting board and cut into 1 1/2" squares, using a ruler if needed. Transfer the squares to the baking sheets and carefully prick each one a few times with a fork. 
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes. The shortbreads will remain pale. Remove from oven and transfer to a cookie rack. 

No comments