I don’t know about you, but those flaky, rich butter cookies were a huge part of my childhood. Often purchased in one of those big tins around the holidays, my grandma always had a full stock to be enjoyed with a cup of hot, sweet mint tea at the end of the night.
Some of my fondest memories are sitting on the couch with the coffee table pulled right up to the edge, the tea-tray laid out with mint tea, sugar cubes, a little pot of cream, and the plate of butter cookies. Some were plain, some chocolate, some with a sprinkle of decorative sugar. The Hallmark made-for-TV version of The Secret Garden played on VHS (remember adjusting tracking…. yeah…). I’d be curled up in my favorite soft white blanket trying desperately not to get crumbs everywhere.
Those days are long-gone of course. We don’t even have a coffee table, and though we do have a tea-tray if I mention anything mint to my children they act like I just tried to offer them rat poison. And we could watch The Secret Garden, assuming it’s on Netflix (it’s not, I checked. Thanks Netflix, for refusing to acknowledge my childhood).
I figured I could recapture a little of those memories with a delicious, homemade butter cookie recipe. It’s not exactly the same, not as perfect as the mass-produced store kind. My shapes are so amateur I think any proper baker reading this is probably cringing and crying at the sight of them.
But the taste is spot on, and you can’t go wrong with things dipped in chocolate. You just can’t. So without further ado, here’s one of the simplest cookie recipes out there.
1- cup butter- room temp (this temp is very important. You can mimic room temp butter by microwaving the sticks for about 20 seconds)
1/2- cup white granulated sugar
1- tsp vanilla
2 1/4- cups sifted white flour (I use bread flour)
1/4- tsp salt
Dipping Chocolate Ingredients
1- cup chocolate chips
1/4- cup butter
Start by preheating your oven to 350F, and line a cookie sheet with either non-stick foil or parchment paper.
In your stand mixer with the beater or paddle attachment, add butter and sugar, and beat until creamy, about 2 minutes on medium. Remember to stop in between and scrape the sides and bottom with a rubber spatula.
Once combined, reduce speed to slow and add in egg and beat until thoroughly combined. Scrape down sides, add in vanilla, and mix on medium for another minute or so until batter is creamy. In a separate bowl, use a whisk to blend flour and salt. With mixer on low, slowly add flour and beat until the mixture is fully combined.
It’ll be crumbly at first, so make sure you’re scraping the sides and bottoms to make sure it’s combining. Final mixture should be very doughy and creamy, a lot like a wet chocolate chip cookie dough. This usually takes about four minutes in the mixer.
When mixture is fully combined, prep your pastry bag with a size 7, pronged tip (depending on your cookie design preference). I just did some circles and squares, but I’ll be experimenting with other shapes as I go.
Pipe your cookies directly onto the cookie sheet, leaving about an inch and a half of space between cookies. If you’re having trouble piping the dough, you can leave it out for twenty minutes to soften. This will happen if your butter wasn’t at a proper temperature when mixing.
Place directly into the oven and bake for about 7-10 minutes, or until bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned. Keep a close eye though because they can cook a lot faster than expected. Mine were done in about six minutes.
When finished, remove from tray and place directly onto cooling rack. Fresh baked, the cookies will be much harder than a traditional drop cookie, so the transfer is pretty easy. Cool cookie sheet fully before piping your second batch. (this is important, do not pipe dough onto a hot sheet).
Once baked cookies have cooled, prepare the dip. You can do this either on the stove or microwave. Combine chocolate chips and butter in pot or bowl. For microwave, set for one minute, then stir. If chips are not fully melted, continue to microwave every thirty seconds until butter and chips are combined and you can drizzle chocolate from the edge of a spoon.
For the stove, melt either over a double boiler or on low heat until chocolate and butter is melted. Transfer into a room temp bowl and dip half the cookies into the chocolate, and lay on cooling rack to harden. (or just eat them melty and messy. In fact, you probably should you know, just to make sure it’s good. It’s for science…and stuff.)
Cookies are perfect for dipping in coffee or tea or cocoa, or just you know, hoarking down by the dozen.
Vegan chocolate pudding tart with vegan shortbread crust. Peanut Butter Fudge. From-Scratch Chicken Tikka Masala.
If there are any recipes you’d like to see on the blog, don’t hesitate to send an email or leave a comment.
Oh and for those of you in the UK, here’s a handy conversion chart for the measurements!