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Espresso, Chocolate and Cocoa Nib Shortbread

Espresso, Chocolate and Cocoa Nib Shortbread

Perk up shortbread with the addition of espresso and chocolatey cacao nibs.

Perk up shortbread with the addition of espresso and chocolatey cacao nibs. These crispy and buttery cookies, dipped in melted chocolate, make for a delicious pick-me-up any time of day. I highly recommend using a high-quality chocolate bar, such as Valrhona, for this recipe. If desired, you can temper the chocolate before dipping for a perfect set to your chocolate, but it’s not necessary.

Espresso, Chocolate and Cocoa Nib Shortbread

Yields | 2 dozen |

  • 1 Tbsp instant espresso
  • 1 Tbsp boiling water
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ₂⁄₃ cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 oz semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp cacao nibs, finely chopped
  • 10 oz semi-sweet chocolate, melted, for dipping

| Preparation | Line a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap or parchment paper. Set aside.

Place instant espresso in a glass and pour boiling water over; stir until dissolved. Set aside to cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter, powdered sugar and salt on medium speed for 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down bowl as needed. Add vanilla extract and espresso and mix to incorporate. Add flour and mix, on low, just until combined. Stop to scrape down sides and bottom of bowl; add in chopped chocolate and cacao nibs. Mix just until combined. Transfer dough into prepared loaf pan. Gently press dough into pan until it fills entire pan with an even surface. Cover and transfer to refrigerator to chill until firm, at least 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Remove dough from baking pan and transfer to cutting board. Using a large chef’s knife, slice dough into ¼-inch thick slices and place on baking sheet, spacing about 1 inch apart. Bake cookies for 18 to 20 minutes or until firm to touch. Remove from oven and set on a wire rack to cool completely.

Dip each piece of shortbread cookie halfway into melted chocolate. Set back on lined baking sheet until chocolate has set. Store shortbread in an airtight container, at room temperature, for up to three days.

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Teresa Floyd is a Kansas City-based food writer, editor for the online food publication feedfeed and contributing monthly columnist for Feast Magazine’s Sugar Rush. Find her current creations on Now, Forager, a pastry blog featuring seasonal desserts.

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