Shortbread Heart Cookies
- 1 ½ cups 3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1-2 tablespoons water if dough is too dry
- 1 ½ cups high quality semi sweet chocolate chips, melted and tempered if desired
- Red decorative sugar, if desired
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, on medium-high speed cream the butter and sugar until just combined. Add vanilla and almond extracts and blend well.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and salt until well combined.
- On low speed, add the flour mixture until a dough starts to form.
- Turn off the mixer and feel the dough with your fingers. If it is crumbly or too dry, add 1-2 tablespoons of water and blend on low speed until the water is absorbed and the dough feels less dry.
- Pour dough out onto a surface and shape into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes up to an hour.
- Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper.
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll the dough ½ inch thick. Using a 3-inch diameter heart-shaped cookie cutter or any other cookie cutter you desire, cut out cookies and gently transfer them onto the prepared sheet pans.
- Continue rolling out and cutting dough until all dough is used up.
- Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the cookies are barely pale brown around the edges.
- Allow to cool completely.
- Set 2 clean wax paper lined sheet pans aside.
- Dip ½ of each heart cookie into the melted chocolate, allowing the excess to drip off. Place the cookies on the prepared sheet pans, and sprinkle the chocolate with red sugar if desired. Continue dipping remaining cookies in the chocolate and sprinkling with sugar. If the chocolate is not tempered, place the sheet pans of cookies in the refrigerator until the chocolate is firm. Store cookies in an airtight container with wax paper separating the layers.
Makes approximately 2 dozen 3-inch diameter cookies