These are small like a cookie but pack flavor like a full-on torte. Thin, delicate shortbread cookies provide structure, sweetness, and the depth of flavor that only butter can bring while red currant preserves wakes your taste buds up with a satisfying tanginess and dark chocolate coats the palate with richness and tannins for a lingering dry finish. A sip of strong black coffee refreshes the mouth for another bite and before long, you’ve finished and been satisfied with a taste sensation that could originate only from Europe. Originally created by a bakery in Bad Ischl, Austria and made popular by their royal clientele, these are cookies meant for those who can appreciate the variety of flavors and textures; buy a package of store-bought cookies for the kiddies.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup blanched almond flour
- pinch of salt
- 10 tbs unsalted butter, at cool room temperature
- 2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 cup red currant jelly, stirred to loosen
- 5 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 2 tbs strong brewed hot coffee
- 2 tbs hot water
- 2 tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 tbs finely chopped pistachios
- To make the dough, combine flour, almond flour, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.
- In a larger bowl, beat the butter using a handheld electric mixer on high speed until smooth. On low speed, add confectioners’ sugar and mix until just combined. Stir in flour mixture with a spoon to make a stiff dough. Gather dough into two thick disks and wrap in cling film. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- Position racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat to 350 F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- On a lightly-floured work surface, roll out one of the disks to a 1/8″ thick round. Using a 2 1/2″ round cookie cutter, cut out as many cookies as possible and place on baking sheets. Gather the scraps and set aside. Repeat with the second disk. Combine the scraps and knead until smooth. Roll and cut out cookies to make a total of 24.
- Bake until cookies are golden brown, about 12-15 minutes. Rotate and turn pans halfway through baking cycle for even browning. Cool slightly in the pan, then transfer to awire rack to cool completely.
- Place about 1 tsp preserves on the smooth side of 12 of the cookies and sandwich with a second cookie. Arrange sandwiches about 1″ apart on a wire rack set over a sheet pan.
- To make the glaze, combine chocolate, coffee, and hot water in a double boiler over simmering water and stir constantly until chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and stir in the butter until combined. Set aside to cool and thicken slightly.
- Pour the warm glaze over the top of each cookie, using a small offset spatula to coax it over the top and sides of the cookie. Sprinkle a pinch of chopped pistachio in the center of each glazed cookie and refrigerate for 30 minutes to set the glaze.
As you can see from the pictures, I failed to glaze the sides of the cookies and, when combined with the fact that I used a bit too much jelly filling, I had a little bit of top-cookie slippage. Always read the recipe thoroughly before starting! Note to self 🙂