Oh boy, did I have fun sculpting shortbread for Mother’s Day. I’m getting this in just under the wire, but chances are you have everything you need to make these rich Chocolate Shortbread Flowers. I learned what works (and what definitely doesn’t) when it comes to designing cookie flowers, and have chosen my two favorite options for this post: roses and two-layer posies.
I used half butter and half shortening to give the blooms a little more stability. I know, I know . . . I don’t like shortening either. But sometimes you just have to make an exception. As long as you roll the dough out between pieces of parchment, you can re-roll to your heart’s content. (I used my handy tortilla press again, and it worked very well!)
Leave the flowers plain or decorate the heck out of them. The cookies don’t have much sugar, so you can dip the baked edges or bottoms in chocolate without being afraid of getting them too sweet. I’ll give you a few options for decorating, and then you’re on your own.
Whatever you do, make sure you have a glass of milk or cup of coffee with your cookies; they’re really rich!
|Chocolate Shortbread Flowers|| |
- ½ cup butter, softened
- ½ cup shortening
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 3 tablespoons coffee or milk
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup cornstarch
- Chocolate chips (large preferred) for 2-layer cookies
- Dark chocolate and sparkling sugar for decorating, if desired.
- You will need a small heart cutter for roses (though you can make them with circles, too) or two flower cutters - one large, one smaller - for the 2-layer flowers.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter, shortening, and powdered sugar together until creamy.
- Add egg yolk and coffee (or milk) and mix well.
- Add flour, cocoa powder, salt, and cornstarch. Beat well. Be patient - it may take a few minutes before the mixture comes together.
- Divide into two parts and chill for 1 hour.
- Heat oven to 350 F.
- Working with half of the dough at a time, roll out thin, about ⅛-inch. It's best to roll between lightly floured sheets of parchment. (Or use my trick and put small balls of dough between parchment and use a tortilla press.)
- TO MAKE ROSES: Cut 6-7 small hearts. Press both rounded sides between thumb and forefinger to thin them out a little. Roll one heart, beginning at a rounded corner and rolling towards the other, making the center. It will create a "stem". Don't worry about this, you'll be cutting it off when you're done. Add one heart at a time, wrapping around the center. Stagger the petals as you go, and gently roll them outwards. If the dough cracks, just pinch it like you would clay. Add as many hearts as you want. Cut out two leaves and press them against the sides of the rose. Using scissors, cut the stem part off so the rose will sit flat. Place on ungreased baking sheet.
- Bake 10-12 minutes. They should be firm, but don't let them get dark. Cool on a rack. Dip the bottom of the flowers in chocolate if you wish, and place on parchment until firm.
- TO MAKE TWO-LAYER FLOWERS: For each flower, cut out one large and one small flower. Use a wooden skewer, toothpick, or the back of a knife to gently score the petals. This will make them easier to shape. (Dip the edges of both in sparkling sugar now if you wish.) Lightly position the small flower on the large one. Place a large chocolate chip point side down in the center of the small flower and press firmly. This will make the top flower raise and cup slightly. Slide a thin spatula under flower and lay it over the cavity of a mini muffin pan. Don't press down - it will shape itself as it cooks. Once muffin pan is full, bake for 10-12 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes on a rack before lifting the flowers out carefully.
- Leave plain, or dip the bottom in chocolate. You can add filling to the center - chocolate ganache, icing, or a mini peanut butter cup.
We’ll start with the posies:
Once cooled, I like to dip the bottom in melted chocolate and then set it on parchment until firm. (The fridge makes this go much faster.) You can leave it as is or fill the center with ganache or icing. You can also dip the edges in sparkling sugar before assembling the flower.
Now for the roses:
I covered the bottom of my roses with melted dark chocolate, finding it was easier to paint the chocolate on with a brush than to dip the cookies. I love the texture contrast – that snap of chocolate before your teeth hit cookie. Mmmm.
For fun, I put some of the melted chocolate into a small pastry bag and accented the petals on some of the flowers, outlining each one. It was surprisingly quick and easy, and fancy-dancy.
Well, there you have it. Not nearly as complicated as you expected, right? What are you waiting for? Go, go, go!