Next week is Valentine’s Day. I think Valentine’s Day is a dumb holiday. Call me a Valentine’s Day Scrooge.
My DSH loves Valentine’s Day. Every year he buys his girls (the ones still left at home anyway, he stops after they move out) a bunch of cheesy Valentine’s Day stuff.
I usually prepare a nice meal to share together at least partly because I love to feed my family nice meals, but also because I think the pricing and limited menus offered by restaurants for this holiday are crazy.
I’ve been making these Valentine’s Shortbread Cookies for a few years now, but over time I have been tweaking the shortbread recipe until I have one that is my own.
I love shortbread cookies. Dip them in some good chocolate and you have a simple, yet elegant little dessert. The beauty of these cookies is that they actually taste better after a few days unlike most cookies which go stale quickly.
I hope you enjoy these little treats. I know that I enjoy making them, sharing them, and eating them, too!
Shortbread Cookies ingredients.
Shortbread cookies have very few ingredients and no eggs or leavening agents. A few things to remember: Make sure the butter is softened to room temperature (not too soft and not too hard). Make sure to spend time creaming the butter and beating the sugar into it. Five minutes seems like a long time, but you will end up with a light yellow and really creamy mixture. Do not overmix when adding the flour and use flour sparingly when rolling out the dough.
Use an airbake cookie pan or layer parchment paper on a regular cookie sheet. You will be cooking them in a low oven and a little bit more slowly than most cookies.
You want them to be baked but not browned.
The cookies are good as is, but adding a coating of chocolate to them makes them a little bit more elegant and appropriate for the holiday. Chocolate screams love and Valentine’s Day to me.
I just dip the bottom edge of the cookies in the melted chocolate. If you haven’t overheated the chocolate, you will end up with a nice thick layer that will take about 30 minutes to completely harden.
This batch made 44 cookies.
In spite of my Scrooge-like attitude toward Valentine’s Day, I do love to make and share these with my family.
Valentine’s Shortbread Cookies
Makes 3 to 4 dozen cookies
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup rice flour
½ tsp salt
2/3 cup superfine Baker’s sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup bittersweet, semi-sweet, or milk chocolate
1 TB shortening
Preheat oven to 325° F.
In a medium-sized bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, rice flour, and salt. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, beat butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy. While mixing on medium speed, slowly add the sugar, scraping down the sides as needed. Beat for 5 minutes until sugar is well combined and the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Add the flour mixture in three batches and mix on low just until combined. Put dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead dough 5 or 6 times into a round disk. Using a rolling pin, roll out dough to a thickness of 1/4″ and cut using a 2″ inch heart-shaped cookie cutter. Place cookies onto an ungreased airbake cookie sheet or a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 12 to 16 minutes just until the edges are set and the bottoms are very lightly browned. The tops and sides should not be browned. Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
Melt the chocolate in the microwave for one minute stirring well after the first 30 second intervals. After the first minute, add the shortening and microwave for another 30 seconds. Stir until completely smooth.
Dip the pointed ends of the heart-shaped cookies into the chocolate and return to a wax paper lined cooling rack. Allow the chocolate to completely harden.
Store in a covered container. These will keep for several days.