Salted Butter and Chocolate Chunk Shortbread

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If you’re looking for a more shortbread type of cookie this recipe needs to be your go to! It almost broke the internet last year when it was first posted! You can find the original recipe here at bon appetit.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (2¼ sticks) cold salted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces (254g)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 6 ounces semisweet or bittersweet dark chocolate, chopped (but not too fine, you want chunks, not thin shards of chocolate) 170g
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • Demerara sugar (for rolling)
  • Flaky sea salt

HOW TO

  • Using an electric mixer and a medium bowl or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla on medium-high speed until super light and fluffy, 3–5 minutes.

  • Using a spatula, scrape down sides of bowl. With mixer on low speed, slowly add flour, followed by chocolate chunks, and beat just to blend.

  • Divide dough in half, then place each half on a large piece of plastic wrap. Fold plastic over to cover dough and protect your hands from getting all sticky. Using your hands (just like you’re playing with clay), form dough into a log shape; rolling it on the counter will help you smooth it out, but don’t worry about getting it totally perfect. Each half should form logs that are 2–2¼” in diameter. Chill until firm, about 2 hours.

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (180C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Brush outside of logs with egg wash. Roll logs in demerara sugar.

  • Slice each log into ½”-thick rounds. Arrange on prepared baking sheet about 1″ apart (they won’t spread much). Sprinkle with sea salt. Bake cookies until edges are just beginning to brown, 12–15 minutes. Let cool slightly before eating them all.

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Chocolate Chip Cookies

IMG_4493.PNGFor some reason I have an amazing Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. I don’t know what it is, but most people will request the cookies (if I am coming over) or they sell like hotcakes if we have a fundraiser. While I’m not much of a sweet tooth, I can definitely eat one or two of these no problem.

My most famous (I use that word pretty lightly..haha) combination would have to be: Chocolate Chip, Pretzel and Snickers Cookies. One of our close friends is allergic to nuts, so more often than not I switch to Chocolate Chip and Mars Bar Cookies.

Yesterday Coles had Tim Tams on sale. If you have ever lived in or visited Australia you know these are the most amazing chocolate biscuit in the world, so I decided to try putting Tim Tams in my cookies… Let me tell you- I baked 14 of these bad boys last night and I have 3 left today. (I’ve only had one just to clarify for any haters out there..)

So, below is my basic Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe that I use, with a note as to where you can add any inclusions!

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Steph’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Ingredients needed

  • 150g softened cooking butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
  • 1 3/4 cup plain flour

Inclusions (optional)

  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped Tim Tams
  • 1 cup chopped pretzels
  • 1 cup chopped Snickers bars
  • 1 cup chopped Mars barsIMG_4495

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius, and line two baking trays
  2. Place the softened butter, both sugars and vanilla essence in a mixing bowl. Mix on medium speed till everything is combined.
  3. Add the egg and mix again till combined
  4. Hand mix in the flour until combinedIMG_4498
  5. *This is where you’ll add any inclusions- add chocolate chips and chopped Tim Tams. Mix until combined.IMG_4499
  6. Roll into -balls and place on a baking tray.IMG_4494
  7. Bake for 10-12 min. The moment you see the bottoms of the cookies going brown take them out of the oven. You don’t want to overcook the cookies

For storage, I place them on a plate with a slice of bread (don’t let the bread touch the cookies) and wrap with cling wrap. An alternative is to place the cookies in a container and place a piece of baking paper on the top layer and place the piece of bread on top.

The bread will draw all the moisture from the air and keep the cookies soft.

 

 

My first time Sugar Cookies!

I have always wanted to make Sugar Cookies, but with working full-time it wasn’t a priority, considering most people recommend refrigerating the dough overnight. But, I finally decided to jump off the cliff and make them! The dough was the easy part.. trying my hand at icing with royal icing was another story.. I will list all my issues below so you can avoid them moving forward!!

I used a recipe for the Sugar Cookie Dough from The Cake Girls. They have step by step pictures as well as a FAQ if something is going wrong with your dough! On a side note- I halved the recipe because I didn’t have enough butter and still managed to get 2 dozen cookies.

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ULTIMATE SUGAR COOKIE RECIPE

The Cake Girls advise that you should get approx. 20-25 medium cookies or 12 -14 XL cookies, however as mentioned, I halved the recipe and got 24 cookies!

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened (1 stick= 113 grams.. 2 sticks=226 grams)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp vanilla extract

HOW TO

  1. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium high-speed until light and fluffy. Switch the mixer to low and add the egg and vanilla. Stop and scrape down the bowl and then continue to mix on low until incorporated.
  2. Gradually add the flour mixture and mix just until the dough forms, scraping down the bowl as necessary. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until very firm; minimum 2 hours or overnight. I refrigerated my dough overnight which worked perfect.
  3. Let the dough stand at room temperature for 10 minutes before rolling. Roll 1/3 of the dough (put the rest back in the fridge) on a heavily floured surface to a 3/8″-1/4″ thickness. Cut out shapes and place them on a parchment lined tray and refrigerate for 15 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees (180 Celsius) for 12-14 minutes or until the cookies are just very lightly browned around the edges. Let cool on tray.
  4. Once cool, you can freeze them to be decorated later by placing them between layers of wax paper inside of a snap lid container. They will store well for up to 3 months. Just bring them to room temperature before decorating! I kept mine on the bench for the entire day in a sealed container before icing.

For the Royal Icing I used an Australia recipe because I was having a hard time locating meringue powder which was recommended on nearly all of the American recipes. This recipe is from Taste:

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1 1/2 cups pure icing sugar, sifted
1 egg white
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
Food Colouring (I used Queen Food Colours)

HOW TO

  1. Lightly whisk egg white and lemon juice together in a bowl. Gradually add icing sugar, whisking until smooth and combined.
  2. Separate the icing into small containers and colour as needed.

TO DECORATE THE COOKIES

Piping Bags (I recommend having multiple piping bags. I tried using one and washing it each time, however the residual water in the bag affected the consistency of the icing)
Skewers or Toothpicks

HOW TO

  1. Pour the colours into piping bags and pipe around the edges of the cookies.
  2. Wait a few minutes for the icing to set and fill the centre of the cookies with icing. Using a toothpick or skewer ‘flood’ the middle of the cookie. Here’s a good photo tutorial from Sweet Sugar Belle.