I know, I know. Who has salted butter laying around? But I promise it's worth that extra trip to the store because these shortbread cookies are the perfect antidote to those pesky midwinter blues. In my opinion, chocolate + nutmeg is one of the most woefully underrated flavor combinations. And we tend to think of nutmeg as being inextricably tied to cinnamon and cloves, but it actually has a wonderful flavor all on its own. It adds a new depth and complexity to the typical shortbread - the result is a sweet and salty cookie with warm and toasty flavor notes. Definitely try one (or two) right out of the oven!
Nutmeg & Chocolate Shortbread
*Adapted from the combined genius of Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen + Alison Roman
- Salted Butter (Cold): 1 cup (2 sticks)
- Granulated Sugar: 1/2 cup
- Brown Sugar: 1/4 cup
- Nutmeg: 1/2 teaspoon
- Vanilla Extract: 1 1/2 teaspoons
- Flour: 2 cups
- Semisweet Chocolate (Chopped): 5 ounces
- Egg (Beaten): 1
- Turbinado Sugar: For Rolling
The How To:
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add flour all at once. Mix until dough forms a loose, crumbly structure. Pour in the chocolate chunks, mix until just combined.
Divide the dough into two piles on sheets of plastic wrap, parchment paper, or wax paper. Roll into 2 inch logs - it's okay if they end up in a square-ish shape. Refrigerate the logs for 2 hours, or if you're in a hurry - freeze for 30 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat. Unwrap your dough logs and brush them with the beaten egg. Sprinkle turbinado sugar onto the logs and roll them around until fully coated. Using a sharp serrated knife, cut the dough logs into 1/2 inch rounds. Place cookies 1 inch apart on your prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 12-14 minutes, until edges are set and slightly golden. Let the cookies cool on the pan for 2 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack.
A Few Notes:
- The dough will look crumbly - don't freak out + don't add water. It will be fine.
- You want to chop your chocolate into medium size chunks - too large and it will be difficult to cut the cookies out, too small and the chocolate will fade into the dough.
- If you don't have salted butter, you can use a teaspoon of kosher salt instead.