These tender little melt-in-the-mouth cookies are ridiculously simple to make in a food processor.
The dried tart cherries are optional. You could use dried cranberries or leave them out altogether. I happen to love the contrast between a rich, chocolatey, buttery cookie and little pieces of mouthwateringly tart dried cherry…not too much, just enough to tweak your taste buds.
You can also substitute the ground almonds for flour, making this a little more economical. Don’t worry, they’ll still be perfect.
CHOCOLATE SHORTBREAD COOKIES WITH DRIED TART CHERRIES
(Makes 20-30 cookies)
4.5oz (138g) of all-purpose flour
4.5 oz (138g) of ground almonds
1 oz (25g) of best quality cocoa powder
A pinch of salt
8 oz (250g) of unsalted butter cut into small pieces, at room temp
5oz (150g) of powdered sugar – plus extra for dusting
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup of tart dried cherries or cranberries, chopped (optional)
Put all the dry ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a couple of times. Add the butter and vanilla. Pulse until you have a stiff dough.
Scrape the dough onto a board lined with cling film and with another piece of cling film on top, roll the dough into a couple of cylinder shapes approx 12 inches (30cm) long and 2 inches (5cm) in diameter.
Wrap these in cling film and put in the freezer for about 15-20 minutes or until they’re quite firm but not too firm to cut.
Preheat the oven to 325F (160C).
Grease a couple of cookie sheets and once the dough is firm, cut into rounds about 1/2 inch (1.5cm) thick. Arrange on the cookie sheets at least 2 inches (5cm) apart as they’ll spread.
Bake for 15 minutes then remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before carefully transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, dust with powdered sugar.
Store them in an airtight container and they’ll last a week but it’s unlikely, because you’ll have devoured them all.