In the morning I make tea. And lately I have been accompanying it with a single shortbread cookie.
For a long time I resisted making delicious cookies, because the problem of sugar. But I found if I make less delicious cookies, since they are less delicious, they don’t scratch the cookie itch very well, so I end up eating more of them—which pretty much defeats the purpose of making “more healthy” cookies. :( So thanks to Anna’s find of this great recipe, I’ve resorted to making cookies that are really too good. And somehow limiting myself to eating just two a day, since they really scratch the cookie itch.
⁘ 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (9 ounces or 255 grams) room temperature salted butter (if not using salted butter, add ¾ tsp salt)
⁘ 3/4 cup (150 grams) sugar (brown, or light brown)
⁘ 1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract
⁘ 2 ¼ cups (295 grams) all-purpose flour
⁘ 6 ounces (170 grams) semi- or bittersweet dark chocolate, chopped (you want chunks, not thin shards of chocolate)
⁘ 1 large egg (optional)
⁘ Demerara, turbinado, raw, or sanding sugar, for rolling (optional)
⁘ Flaky sea salt for sprinkling
Beat the butter, sugar, and vanilla with a metal spoon or fork until light and fluffy, scraping down bowl as needed. (Note: if you use a mixer, the butter must be cold and cut into small pieces. But it’s easy enough to beat warm butter with a fork IMO). Add flour, and mix until just combined. Add chocolate chunks, mix just until incorporated. Mixture will be crumbly.
Divide dough evenly between two sheets of parchment paper, waxed paper, reusable wax cloths, or plastic wrap and use your hands to form the dough halves into logs about 2 to 2 1/4 inches in diameter. Chill until totally firm in freezer (30 min) or fridge (~2 hours).
When you’re ready to bake, heat oven to 350°F. Line one or two large baking sheets with parchment paper, or silpat if you have one.
Optional: Lightly beat the egg and open up your chilled cookies logs to brush it over the sides. Sprinkle the coarse sugar on the open paper or plastic wrap and roll the logs into it, coating them. (Honestly, these cookies are cookielike enough without egg coated candied edges!)
Using a sharp serrated knife, cut logs into 1/2-inch thick rounds. You’re going to hit some chocolate chunks, so saw gently, squeezing the cookie to keep it from breaking if needed. Arrange slices on prepared sheets one inch apart (they don’t spread much) and sprinkle each with a few flakes of salt. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the edges are just beginning to get golden brown. People always talk about wire cooling racks, but I don’t own one—I just let the cookies cool on a room temperature sheet or plate. Voila!