Tender Heart Cookies

February 7, 2015

in Cook What You Like, Cookies and Confections

Tender Hearts 3

Tender Heart Cookies can end up as one of the sweethearts in your life.

Just like seeing your loved ones – partner, kids, pets – looking at these cookies puts a smile on your face.  The tender rich dough has just the right touch of sweet (nothing cloying here!).  Beautiful unadorned, they don’t put up a fuss when you want to dress them up.  And did we mention that the cookie dough is cooperative and forgiving and patiently waits until you com back to it?

They travel well and don’t take up much space.  No concerns about them at gatherings large or small,  Tender Heart Cookies mingle well with others, but might steal the spotlight with their elegantly understated looks.  Enjoy with a white dessert wine or hot tea to bring out the delicate almond and vanilla flavors.

Like your sweethearts, you’ll be reaching for Tender Heart Cookies every chance you get.

Recipe: Tender Heart Cookies

This recipe calls for boiled egg yolks so cook those ahead of time.  Cool the eggs to room temperature before passing the yolks through a fine mesh sieve.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 hard-cooked egg yolks, pressed through a fine mesh sieve
  • 1 egg yolk (uncooked)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips for dipping, optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon non-hydrogenated shortening to thin chocolate

Instructions

  1. Make dough: in a medium large mixing bowl cream softened butter until light, about 30 seconds on medium high speed, using a hand held mixer.  Add sugar and cream until fluffy.  Add cooked egg yolks, uncooked egg yolk, vanilla and almond extracts and mix until well combined.  Stir in flour using a wooden spoon until a dough forms.  Don’t overbeat.  Cover and chill dough until easy to handle, about an hour.
  2. Make cookies:  start with half of the dough flattening it into a disc and roll the dough to 1/2″ thickness on a lightly floured surface or between two sheets of waxed paper.  Cut with a heart-shaped cookie cutter (pictured are cookies using a 1 1/4″ cutter) and place 1″ apart on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silicone liner.  Repeat with remaining half of dough.  Roll up scraps into a disc and refrigerate for 15 minutes to reroll and cut.  While waiting, preheat oven to 350º F.
  3. Bake at 350º F:  bake in a preheated oven in the middle of the oven until cookie bottoms are a light golden brown and tops are firm, about 10-12 minutes.  If baking more than one sheet at a time, halfway through baking rotate sheets top to bottom and front to back.  Cool cookies on baking sheet for 5-10 minutes before transferring to cooling racks.
  4. To dip cookies in chocolate: (optional step) in a small prep bowl, melt chocolate chips and shortening in the microwave for 30 seconds on high (in a 1,000 watt microwave oven).  Stir well. If chocolate is not melted, heat further in microwave in 15 second intervals.  Dip cooled cookies in chocolate, scraping bottom edge of excess chocolate and place on waxed paper until dry.

Store cookies in an airtight tin.  Separate chocolate dipped cookies between sheets of waxed paper.  Cookies are best eaten within 5 days.  Makes about 4 dozen small cookies.

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