It’s a Holiday Cookie Exchange and I’m baking Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies sprinkled with yummy toppings.
Today I’m joining a fun group of blogging pals for a Holiday Cookie Exchange.
You’re going to love all of these amazing holiday cookie recipes.
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I was up all night baking … and sampling.
One can never do too much quality control.
Without further ado, here’s what I’m bringing to the party!
CHOCOLATE DIPPED SHORTBREAD COOKIES
An old classic adapted from Betty Crocker. I love old, classic cookbooks, especially the ones inherited from my mother. Like Betty Crocker’s Cooky Book. The Joy of Cooking has the best roll cookie recipe, an old stalwart that I’ve baked every Christmas for as long as I can remember. And nothing beats those spiral bound cookbooks created as fundraisers for various local clubs and charitable organizations.
My Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookie recipe follows, but first a few notes. You can mix this shortbread dough by hand in a bowl, but I prefer using my KitchenAid mixer with the paddle attachment. And instead of cookie cutters, I rolled the dough into a tube shape. Wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour. I refrigerated my dough overnight.
It should be about 12″ in length and 2″ diameter. Mine are perfectly imperfect and not quite round. I tried.
When ready to bake, measure and mark at 1 cm each before cutting. Then place the rounds on parchment lined baking sheets. I love Reynolds parchment baking sheets, they fit into a full-size baking sheet so there’s no need to cut or tear the parchment paper from a roll (which rarely ends well for me). This recipe makes just over 2 dozen cookies.
You can get about 18 cookies on a sheet.
When melting the chocolate for dipping sauce, you can do it in a microwave (at 50% power, in 30 second intervals, stirring in between) but I prefer to use a double boiler at a very lower simmer. Stirring continuously. Use the best melting chocolate you can get … it makes a difference. I used Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips.
Once the cookies are dipped, return them to the parchment lined baking sheets and sprinkle with the topping of your choice. I used sea salt, toffee, pecans, hazelnuts and pistachios. Crushed candy canes would be very festive and Christmasy, but I don’t like peppermint … so everyone else must suffer.
These cookies are so easy and a fun recipe to bake with kids.
Cookie Baking Essentials ~
Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies
- 1 cup Butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup Powdered Sugar
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 2-1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
Chocolate Dipping Sauce
- 12 oz Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips Use a good quality chocolate. I used Ghirardelli.
- Sea salt, minced toffee, candy canes, pecans, hazelnuts, or anything else that suits your fancy
- In a stand mixer, beat butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until combined. Add flour and continue mixing until it forms a dough. If dough is crumbly, mix in another 1-2 Tbsp of butter.
- Form dough into a ball. Place on floured surface and roll into a tube approximately 2" in diameter and 12" long. Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour, or overnight.
- When ready to bake, preheat over to 350, at least 30 minutes prior to baking.
- Unwrap dough and using a tape measure mark dough every centimeter. Cut at marking into discs and place on parchment lined cookie sheets.
- Bake approximately 15 minutes. Start checking the oven at 12 minutes until dough sets and bottom on cookies is light golden brown. Tops should not brown.
- Remove from oven onto cooling racks until completely cooled. At least 30 minutes.
Chocolate Dipping Sauce
- Using double boiler, bring water to light simmer. Add chocolate chips to top pan and stir continuously until chocolate is melted and smooth.
- Pour chocolate into warmed (warm with hot water and then wipe until dry) small bowl or glass measuring cup.
- Dip each cookie halfway into chocolate, let excess drip off and set back onto parchment lined cookie sheet.
- Immediately sprinkle desired topping over chocolate and let cookies completely set.
These cookies are so good I could eat the entire batch myself. But I didn’t. As soon as the cookies were fully set, I did my quality control and then packaged them in old fashioned tins for easy gifting and transport.
Cookie tins remind me of my grandmother’s house at Christmas. She attended many cookies exchanges and had tons of tins chilling in the basement. Every morning she sent my Grandpa Hank to the basement so she could refresh her sideboard which was covered with tiered trays and platters filled with every imaginable type of cookie.
Holiday Cookie Tins ~
I also packaged a few small gift bags for friends.
So there you have it, Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies.
Now let’s visit my friends to see what they’re bringing to the Cookie Exchange!
If you want to be the Cookie Exchange Party hostess with the mostest, mix up a batch of Cranberry Tequila Punch.
Still shopping for holiday gifts, be sure to check out my gift ideas here.
I’ll be back Saturday when I join Kim and Elizabeth for our weekend inspirations.
Tell me, what’s your favorite holiday cookie?