Espresso Shortbread

Jamie’s family background is strongly Scottish and he’s a coffee addict so espresso shortbread seems perfect for our Christmas cookie tray.  If you’re a coffee junkie feel free to double the espresso in these.  While I love the butter/coffee interplay, Jamie can barely taste the espresso.  Next batch I’ll be doubling it and cutting them smaller – a 2″ square of shortbread can be a little too much of a good thing, especially when everything looks so yummy!

Espresso Shortbread

2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup butter (at room temperature)
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp espresso grounds
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 300.  Line an 8″ square pan with parchment.

Sift the flour and salt.

Beat the butter on medium until creamy and smooth.  Add the sugar and espresso and beat until light and fluffy.  Add the vanilla and beat until fuly incorporated.  On slow speed add the flour in 2 additions and mix just until combined.

Pat the dough into the 8″ pan.  To get a smooth top, cover it with plastic wrap or parchment and press with the flat side of a bowl scraper or a piece of cardboard.  Prick all over with the tines of a fork (the marks will disappear so don’t worry about creating a pattern) then use a knife or scraper to mark cut lines.  I marked mine into 16 2″ squares, which was a little too big, but mark it however you think will work.

Bake the shortbread until pale golden, 45 to 50 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack then cut the shortbread along the marked lines.

Store airtight in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for a month.

Adapted from Flo Braker’s Baking for all Occasions, an awesome book full of great homey desserts that are measured by volume and weights (yay!).

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