cookies

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches

So I’m totally going to start this post off with a happy face 🙂 I feel like I’m starting to get the hang of this high tech camera and the whole lens zoom in and out and natural lighting; although still the weather changes so quickly here that one minute it’s bright and rainbows and sunshine and the next you’re wondering if the rapture is coming and where is Noah’s Arc to give you a ride. Ugh, can be pretty annoying; but anyway enough about my rambling and onto the real thing this post should be about: COOKIES!

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen

I’ve tried multiple times to make shortbread cookies and each time they seriously just melted into goo and nastiness, finally after much tweaking what I’m guessing was a bull-spit (I know I spelled it wrong; I did that on purpose) recipe to begin with I got the recipe just the way I wanted it. I feel like shortbread cookies should be a little dry and crumbly to begin with, if I wanted a moist cookie I would have made a chocolate chip cookie or something like that, but shortbread cookies are different, they lend themselves perfectly to a person who doesn’t have an insane sweet tooth; ironically enough which is me.

Once again, like last post, I’m using Dulce de Leche; I had some left over and didn’t want it to waste (I’m on a budget, I can’t go wasting food all day and night like I’m some kind of one hit wonder who doesn’t know their 15 minutes are up)

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen

Anyway, back to the food, I really wanted to make some shortbread cookie sandwiches and I originally planned for this post to have a roasted banana buttercream in the center instead of its current filling, but the bananas I had were a bit too far gone and when you roast real ripe bananas you basically get goo so I deviated and filled it with the remainder of the Dulce de Leche instead which turned out great because according to my roommate Sexi-Lexi they’re better than my scones and Sexi-Lexi loves herself some scones so I consider this one serious victory!

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen

Adjustments: these cookies make enough for an apartment of four, or at least I thought until they were devoured in hours by basically 1 maybe 2 people, it makes close to 15 – 20 cookie sandwiches depending on the size cookie cutter you use. I’m sure your thinking that doesn’t look like 15 to 20 cookies in those pictures, well I have a very selective roommate who wanted some regular unfilled shortbread cookies and that’s where the rest of them went, if you want to visualize how much it would make then think about maybe multiply what’s in the picture by 0.5 and there you go, if you’re make these cookies for a good amount of people then doubling or even tripling the recipe might be necessary, but it also means more work so be prepared.

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen

When it comes to Dulce de Leche I usually make my own, just because the pre-made is more expensive than regular condensed milk and it’s not hard to make it at all, but my mom got me an already made can so I decided to use it instead. If you prefer to buy the pre-made can its right next to the condensed milk/dehydrated milk/evaporated milk isle.

Helpful Hints & Suggestions: shortbread can be a bitch! You can’t use regular table butter, you need to use butter sticks. I prefer salted butter sticks that way I don’t need to add any salt and they have to be room temperature naturally, not by way of microwave, the microwave melts the butter in a way that the liquid and solids never really recombine the way they should and that spells disaster for these shortbread cookies, so leaving your butter out overnight is the easiest way to make sure it’s room temperature. Also roll your cocoa nibs in your flour, it will make sure they don’t float to the bottom and will ensure even distribution.

Another helpful hint would be to make sure your dough is in the shape of a square when you put it in the plastic wrap to chill, rolling out this dough isn’t hard by any means but getting a good square guarantees less multiple rollings in the future. Also when it comes time to rerolling the remainder of your dough from the cutouts make sure you chill that dough first. In fact, you want to make sure all of your dough remains constantly chilled, you don’t want to put soft shortbread dough in the oven, while your oven preheats keep your already cut dough in the fridge to re-firm up, while you’re cutting new squares make sure your squares are still in the fridge and simply place the new squares on the cookie sheet afterwards and once again chill the dough you may need to re-roll.

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen

Now the cocoa nibs, sometimes I wonder if I bought the cocoa nibs simply because I love saying cocoa nibs, it’s a fun word to say, but if you’re wondering where to buy them I found mine at the local organic store, Mother Earth, I’m guessing that’s where you can find it as well, stores like Mother Earth, Trader Joes or Whole Foods really; I don’t really think places like Wal-Mart or Publix really sell them. If you’re wondering what cocoa nibs even is, it’s basically raw cocoa beans that are dried, fermented and chopped up, it’s super bitter and has an extreme deep chocolate taste, but the Dulce de Leche is so sweet it really complements the cocoa nibs so the entire combination works. If you can’t find cocoa nibs or don’t want to specialty order them then using the darkest chocolate you can find is a good substitute, if you don’t like dark chocolate a la my mother then substitute it with the chocolate of your choice just remember it will be sweeter.

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches || The Crowded Kitchen

Ta-Ta-For-Now: well thanks for reading this post and I hope you like it. That’s all from me really, and I hope you enjoyed the pictures. This picture thing really irks me something fierce, you can tell I’m not a pro at it and I want this blog to be as professional as possible and sometimes I feel like my pictures take away from that, but enjoy and you can find the recipe below from a downloadable link, it simply opens up to Adobe, no worries on viruses or anything.

DOWNLOADABLE RECIPE:

Cocoa Nib + Dulce de Leche Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches

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