Of all the types of cookies I have
made for the holiday season, my favorite by far is shortbread.
It is so undemanding and always
yields perfect results, so it’s an ideal recipe for even the novice baker.
The reason? The high butter content
pretty much guarantees a tender and crumbly texture that holds up well, yet
melts in your mouth.
Additionally, there’s no greasing
and lining of pans, flouring, rolling and cutting of shapes, and the basic
dough lends itself to virtually endless variations.
I love the richness of espresso
here and created a “cappuccino” shortbread that will delight all of the coffee
lovers in your life.
You can leave the finished cookies
plain, drizzle, dip in some melted chocolate or do as I did and top with a
swirl of white chocolate and dusting of cinnamon, to mimic a cup of cappuccino.
4 - 5 dozen cookies
½ pound (2 sticks or 16
tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons instant espresso
1 cup white chocolate chips
ground cinnamon, for dusting
1. Beat butter and sugar in the bowl
of an electric mixer till fluffy. Beat in the vanilla. Add the flour, salt and
espresso and beat just till combined.
2. On a lightly floured surface, shape the dough into a log (mine was about 15" long but it doesn't have to be exact), wrap
in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour.
3. Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
4. Slice the dough into 1/4"-thick
cookies and place on your prepared baking sheets. Bake till firm, 20-30 minutes. Cool cookies for a few minutes on the baking sheets before
transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
5. Melt the chocolate chips in a bowl set
over a pan of barely simmering water. Working with 2 -3 cookies at a time, spoon
a bit of the melted chocolate over each cookie and spread with the back of the spoon. Dust lightly with the cinnamon. Let chocolate set and store cookies, covered, at room