Monday, January 17, 2011

Shortbread Hearts

picture taken from
I spotted this good idea thumbing through the February issue of the Martha Stewart magazine.  I like the idea of presenting the chocolate covered hearts in a pretty box. Many shortbread recipes naturally do not include eggs.  I started to make shortbread when I learned of my son's egg allergy.  I enjoy making different shapes using cookie cutters for special occasions and holidays.  

This post includes two different sets of ingredients and two very different methods.  The first is from Martha Stewart.  The second is from the Thermomix guide, Every day cooking for every family.  I have only made shortbread using my Thermomix.  I like that I can use my Thermomix to do everything: grind granulated sugar to make caster sugar, grid rice into rice flour, churn cream into butter and melt chocolate for dipping.

Recipe #1

What you need:
1 cup (3 sticks) unsalted butter
3/4 cups sifted confectioner's sugar (I use Wholesome Sweeteners sugars)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped ( I use Enjoy Life chocolate chips)
1 teaspoon canola oil or pure vegetable shortening

What to do:
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter, sugar, and vanilla until combined. On slow speed, beat in flour and salt until combined. Wrap dough in plastic wrap; chill until firm, at least 2 hours, or overnight.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough until 1/16-to-1/8 inch thick. Cut out hearts with a 2-inch heart cookie cutter. Transfer cookies to an ungreased baking sheet; chill for 30 minutes.

Heat oven to 300 degrees with a rack in the center. Press the tines of a fork into each cookie to make designs. Bake until just beginning to brown around the edges, about 18 minutes. (Cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for about 5 days.)

In the top of a double boiler or in a heat-proof bowl set over simmering water, melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally. Stir in the oil. Dip half or one third of each cookie into the chocolate mixture. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack to dry, or place them on a piece of parchment paper in the freezer for 10 minutes. Serve.

Read more at 
Chocolate-Dipped Shortbread Hearts - Martha Stewart Recipes 

Recipe # 2:

What  you need:
100 grams plain flour
50 grams rice flour or cornflour
50 grams caster sugar
100 grams hard butter, cut into cubes

What to do:
Preheat oven to 300-315 degrees (shortbread should be pale golden brown so you need to lower the temperature accordingly. )

Put all ingredients into TM bowl and mix for 10 seconds on speed 6 to combine.

Set dial to closed lid position and mix for 20 seconds on Interval speed.  The mixture will still appear dry and crumbly.

Tip mixture into greased cake tin or shortbread mold.  Press down evenly with palm of hand.  If using tin, flute edges.  You can press marks using fork at this point.  Alternatively, wrap in plastic wrap and put in refrigerator to rest before rolling out and cutting into shapes.  Bake in center of oven for about 20 minutes or until pale golden color and firm to touch.  Mark top into portion while still in baking tray.  Dredge with caster sugar.  

I need to make these soon:

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