Chocolate Shortbread Cookies (Makes 20-25)

Surprised you with my sudden disappearance, didn’t I? As the kith and kin know, I relocated to New York at the end of May 2012. International relocation wasn’t easy and as much as I tried to keep up with my weekly post, I slipped three Fridays.  But I am back with a new recipe!

I am still getting used to the American kitchen. I haven’t tried anything new so far. The Chocolate Shortcake cookie recipe that I present below is one of the last foods that I baked in India before I set off. These cookies proved to be a big savior – they came in really handy during our long journey and settlement. 
I love the cake like crumbly texture of these cookies!!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour (maida)
  • ¾ cup wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (to be softened in the process)
  • ½ tsp vanilla powder/ 1 tsp vanilla essence (vanilla powder is available at Fab India)
  • A pinch of salt

Steps

  • Take the measured quantity of butter and allow it to soften in a bowl (microwave the butter, or leave it out for sometime at room temperature – the summer heat will soften it in a few minutes; ensure that the butter does not melt)

  • Beat the butter with a fork, long enough for it to turn creamy white (about 8-10 minutes; the husband should come in handy!)

  • Grind the sugar and pass it through a sieve to ensure that no granules remain; add this finely ground sugar to butter and again beat until smooth (another 6-7 minutes); if you’re using vanilla essence, add at this stage and mix

  • In a separate bowl sift the all purpose flour, wheat flour, cocoa powder and salt; if you’re using vanilla powder, add  it at this stage, and whisk the ingredients

  • Stir in the flour mix into the bowl containcing butter and sugar, combine it lightly with your hands until incorporated, flatten the dough into a disk shape, wrap it in plastic/shrink wrap and refrigerate for about an hour to allow the dough to firm up

  • Once you take the dough out of the refrigerater, it might appear dry and may break; should that happen, combine it together
  • Roll the dough on to a lightly floured surface using a rolling pin into the dinner plate size disc; one can even use hands to flatten the dough – this step requires patience; the dough will keep falling apart/ cracking up – don’t worry, just keep trying

  •  Cut into different shapes using a lightly floured cookie cutter – since I did not have any, I used a water bottle cap to get prefect circles – brush a little flour on one side of the rounds; recombine the dough that remains after cutting these rounds, roll it once again and cut more rounds, repeat untill the dough is finished
  • Arrange on a baking tray, lined with butter paper/aluminium foil (leave some room as the cookies tend to rise a little after baking) and refrigerate for 10-15 minutes

  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C, take the tray out from refrigerater and bake for
    8-10 minutes

  • Once out from the oven the cookies may appear soft – don’t worry your efforts haven’t gone waste, they’ll  firm up once cool

The process may seem complicated, but trust me, it’s only a matter of patience and practice. 


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