Remember all those cookies I made for Christmas presents? Did I mention I forgot to photograph any of them? Well, any of the perfect ones anyway. Bad food blogger. I did keep a few back in order for Mr. L and I to munch on so I'll try to post them. Except for the Pretzel Chocolate Bites. Mr. L finds them a little addicting. There aren't any left. I have to make another batch...to photograph for the blog of course...that's my story and I'm sticking to it.
I found these little shortbread cookies on the FoodGal blog. They intrigued me because they contained "cocoa nibs", something I'd never heard of. Cocoa Nibs are "small broken nuggets of roasted, shelled and cracked cocoa beans". Sounded interesting so I set out to find some nibs and make these cookies. Which was easier said than done. No one seemed to have (or would be able to ship in time) roasted cocoa nibs. I was able to find some raw nibs at Whole Foods which I roasted and used in the recipe.
I liked the chocolate flavor of this and the kinda crunch the nibs gave it. Mr. L, not so much. As he put it "not my favorite". For him to turn down something chocolate? Interesting that we had such a different view of the same cookie. I'd say if you like cocoa nibs, the flavor and crunch, you'll like these.The recipe originally came from The Art and Soul of Baking by Cindy Mushet. Do check out the FoodGal blog post about the recipe and some of the comments here.
Note: I used Challenge Butter
Note: I used King Arthur unbleached, all purpose flour
Note: I used E. Guittard Cocoa Rouge Cocoa Powder (dutch processes)
Note: I used Ultimate Organic Real Raw Cocoa Nibs. I read online to roast the raw nibs for 15 minutes. I roasted for 5 minutes at 150ºC,
then reduced the temperature to 120ºC and roasted for another ten minutes.
Note: I had some red sugar type stuff in the cupboards...not sure if it was sanding sugar or what but I rolled the dough log in the stuff. It seemed to melt right in but you can see some of the red sugar on the edge of the cookies.
I do not have a smooth place to roll dough. I don't own a nice marble counter top nor a special marble cutting board. Making a "roll log" wasn't the easiest thing to do. My cookies didn't exactly come out perfectly round but close enough for government work. The cardboard paper towel trick really helped (see recipe).
Since I had problems with the other shortbreads I made crumbling, I made the dough and then kept it in the fridge overnight to get very cold until I sliced them.
They said this made 36 cookies. I got about 25 out of the batch.
I'd actually make these again. I'd like to use a different cocoa nib brand that has already been roasted to see if that changes the flavor a bit. And I'd have no problem not sharing them with Mr. L!