I typically find your average shortbread to be boring and uninspired, but it can be a perfect blank slate for creating and experimenting with flavors. I know I love lemony desserts, and of course I love chocolate (because who doesn’t?), so when creating this recipe, I went with a classic lemon shortbread, dipped in white chocolate.
I made these lemony delights for a tailgate at a Royals game hosted by my mom’s work. The first thing out of one of her coworker’s mouths when I presented these was. “Well shit, I made brownies out of a box.” If you ever invite me to a party and ask me to bring dessert, make sure NO ONE ELSE IS BRINGING DESSERT! I’m classically trained folks, and I always want to make a good first impression.
Desserts speak to me, so I hope these speak to you too (figuratively, of course, although if the food starts speaking to you too then we should definitely hang out).
Preheat an oven to 350F. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper. I like to use parchment paper when baking to keep my cookies from sticking and to prevent burning. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the softened butter and sugar until smooth. Add the lemon compound and beat until incorporated. Sift the flour and mix at low speed until the dough comes together.
On a floured work surface, roll out ¼ of the dough to ¼ of an inch in thickness. Make sure you are using plenty of flour during this part, you don’t want your dough to stick to the rolling pin or work surface. Use a cookie cutter of your choice to cut shapes out. Repeat this process until you use all the dough or until the dough becomes too tough to work with. Gently transfer the shapes to the baking sheet. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before putting them in the oven as this will help keep their shape and not spread out.
Make sure the cookies are evenly spaced on the trays, at least 1 to 2 inches apart. Bake them for 12-15 minutes. The cookies should just start to brown on the bottoms. Let them cool in the pan for a minute or so and then transfer to a cooling rack. Let them cool down completely before dipping them in the white chocolate.
Once cool, place the white chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl and zap the chocolate in 15 second intervals until smooth. White chocolate can easily burn, so be careful! Once melted, dip your cooled cookies. I did a half dip but you can do whatever you like. If you don’t want to dip them, you can also drizzle the chocolate over the cookies. Place the dipped cookies on aluminum foil or wax paper until the chocolate has hardened.
White Chocolate & Lemon Shortbread Cookie
Makes 4-5 dozen
2 cups (4 sticks or 1 lb) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2-3 Tablespoons lemon compound
4 ½ cups all purpose flour
12 oz. white chocolate (your choice on brand)
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar together until smooth.
- Add the lemon compound and beat until incorporated.
- Sift the flour and add to the mix, turn the speed to low. The dough will come together and be smooth like a typical cookie dough.
- On a floured work surface, take ¼ of the dough in the bowl and roll it out until about ¼ of an inch in thickness. Make sure you are using plenty of flour so that the dough does not stick to the rolling pin on the work surface. When rolled out, use a cookie cutter of your choice. Repeat this process several times until you have no more dough or the dough is too tough to work with. Make sure to refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes before putting them in the oven.
- Handle the cookies gently and transfer them to the lined baking sheets. Make sure to keep them all an inch or two apart. This will give them room to expand and they won’t run into each other.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes until the cookies are slightly browned on the bottom. Let them rest in the pan for a minute or two and transfer to a cooling rack.
- Let the cookies cool completely before dipping them in the chocolate. Once cool, place your white chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and zap the chocolate in 15 second intervals until the chocolate has melted. White chocolate is easy to ruin if you overheat it, so make sure you are doing it in small intervals until the chocolate has melted.
- Once melted dip your cookies how you’d like, either a full dip or half.
- Place the dipped cookies on aluminum foil or wax paper to let the chocolate harden.