My friend Giselle had a cookbook from Grand Central Bakery that she never used. She thought I might enjoy it, so she gave it to me. The moment I saw the section on tea cookies, I wanted to make them. They are a perfect item to have in your freezer.
If you need a last-minute dessert, just take the dough out of the freezer and let it warm up for about 15 minutes before slicing.
Cocoa Nib Cookies
Makes about 4 dozen
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 15-20 minutes
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
12 tablespoons (1.5 cubes) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup cocoa nibs
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Combine flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda in a bowl and whisk. Sift if there are any lumps in the cocoa powder.
Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars on medium speed until very smooth–about 3 minutes. Reduce mixer speed to low and add the vanilla.
Add the dry ingredients and mix just until they disappear into the dough. Fold in the cocoa nibs and chocolate chips with a sturdy spatula.
Divide the dough into two equal parts and place each on a 12- to 14-inch length of parchment paper, waxed paper or plastic wrap. Smooth and pat the dough into a rectangle by flattening the top and sides with your hands. Use the paper to help roll and shape dough into two logs, 2 inches in diameter and about 10 inches long. Twist the ends of the paper to seal the log, and chill until firm–at least 2 hours or up to 3 days. (Logs of shortbread dough can be frozen for up to 3 months.)
Preheat oven to 325°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Slice cookies 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick and place them about 1 inch apart, in 3 or 4 rows, on prepared pans. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the baking time. The cookies should be firm to the touch.
Recipe from The Grand Central Baking Book by Piper Davis and Ellen Jackson (Ten Speed Press, 2009).