Salted butter chocolate chunk shortbread cookie kind of weekend

Cookie of the Year anyone?

Salted Butter Chocolate Chunk Shortbread Cookies

Although this first batch was delicious, it wasn’t the prettiest outcome.  Baking at high altitude can be a b*%$#, especially with a new cookie recipe, so I started to experiment. I increased the oven temperature to 365 and decreased the time, checking them around 10 minutes. I also subtracted about 3 T of total sugar in the dough. I made these special cookies for this special company we had in town from Texas.  In this photo we took just after cooking dinner, I am showing off my adorable new Anthropologie apron with colorful little poms poms on it.Lame looking first batch …so I tweaked the recipe for altitude a little more and added a different sugar to the edges. The next batch got the best results. There wasn’t a batch number three, because I tested the dough from the freezer daily (raw and baked) over a week’s time until my company arrived: I finally baked what dough was left. The dough is just as delightful as the cookie but oh! that final crunch of the sugar edged cookie. Mmm mmm.

Salted Butter Chocolate Chunk Shortbread Cookies

•1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (9 ounces or 255 grams) salted butter, cold, cut into small pieces

• 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar

• 1/4 cup (50 grams) light brown sugar

• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract

• 2 1/4 cups (295 grams) all-purpose flour

• 6 ounces (170 grams) semi- or bittersweet dark chocolate, chopped (you want chunks, not thin shards of chocolate) or don’t pre-chop and just use the big dark chocolate Ghiradelli chips

• 1 large egg

• Demerara, turbinado, raw, or sanding sugar, for rolling

• Flaky sea salt for sprinkling

Beat the butter, granulated and brown sugars, and vanilla with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, scraping down bowl as needed. Add flour, and mix just until combined. Add chocolate chips, mix just until incorporated. Mixture will look crumbly so keep pressing together with hands until you can form a good log.

Divide between two sheets of plastic wrap and use your hands to form the dough halves into log shapes about 2 to 2 1/4 inches in diameter. Chill until totally firm.

When you’re ready to bake the cookies, heat your oven to 350°F. Line one or two large baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpat. Lightly beat the egg and open up your chilled cookie logs to brush it over the sides of the dough. Sprinkle the coarse sugar on the open paper or plastic wrap and roll the logs into it to coat edges.

Using a sharp knife, cut logs into 1/3-inch thick rounds. You’re going to hit some chocolate chunks, so proceed carefully, squeezing the cookie to keep it from breaking apart. Arrange cookie slices on prepared sheets one inch apart and sprinkle each with a few flakes of salt. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the edges are just beginning to turn golden brown. Let cool slightly before transferring the cookies to wire racks to cool.

The dough can made ahead and stored, tightly wrapped in plastic, up to 1 week in the fridge, or 1 month in the freezer. Baked cookies keep in an airtight container for 5 days or so.

No concert today, just play time at Red Rocks: We obviously didn’t choose the best random dude to take our picture in this shot below.We stopped by my regular hangout spot, Revival Brews, for beer and THE BEST fried pickles. After showing Christina downtown Evergreen, I took her to my favorite trail–Lair o’ the Bear.I also introduced her to two well known ski towns nearby, Vail and Breckenridge, where I tried out this COOL ice chair on our way to meet some friends for their Apres ski.

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