Coffee. I am addicted. I am totally cool with it.
Just coffee, plain ol’ drip coffee…coffee snob, I am not. Snobs are no fun and make other people feel like crap. I try not to make people feel like crap. No one deserves that, especially when they are just trying to enjoy a cup of coffee.
But if you want to make me a freshly ground cup of coffee or perhaps an espresso. I wouldn’t turn it down. No way Jose…I may not be a coffee snob, but I do enjoy quality joe. I mean, I am not stupid. I just don’t believe my taste buds are above anyone else’s.
Beyond a simple cup of coffee…I love when coffee is combined with, say ice cream. Coffee ice cream on a hot summer night…Oh, summer can’t get here fast enough! I plan on making cookies and cream coffee ice cream. Yep…totally going to happen.
Or did you know that the flavor of chocolate can be enhanced by coffee? Fun fact of the day. That is why you see the addition of coffee to chocolate cakes and brownies. It is glorious. Even if you don’t like coffee, I wouldn’t omit the addition of coffee to recipes…chocolate is what you will taste, not coffee. Scout’s honor. I was never in girl scouts and I think boy scouts are the only ones that say scout’s honor and I was never a boy, so, I could be lying for all you know…but I am not. Pinky swear…I do have pinkies, so we are good. Following? No, neither am I.
Chocolate covered espresso beans? fyi…there is no such thing as an espresso bean, espresso is a type of drink, but from a marketing stand point, espresso bean is just more sexy. I get it, I don’t like it, but I get it. So, pretty much they are chocolate covered roasted coffee beans. Nothing fancy.
Okay, these aren’t for everyone. You seriously better love the taste of coffee. These aren’t for the occasional coffee drinker, who piles loads of sugar and cream into their coffee, with the end result looking, tasting, nor smelling like coffee. The coffee shop in the hospital sells these little gems … we eat them like M & M’s.
And what did I do with them? I of course, crushed them up, and mixed them into cookies. I am pretty sure brownies will be next…but for now it is cookies. An espresso shortbread cookie sprinkled with chocolate and coffee bean chunks. Flakey, buttery, crisp, and full of coffee flavor…we are talking an adult cookie, made by an adult, for adults, to be eaten during coffee break with other adults.
To be honest, I was a bit hesitant to share them at work, because not everyone likes the chocolate covered espresso (ahem, roasted coffee) beans. I was sure they would be polite and say they were gooooood, in that sweet way nice people say things are good, when said thing actually kind of stinks. But guess what? They actually enjoyed them. Especially the true coffee drinkers. My point? You will like them even if you had a bad bean once in your life. Awesome!
And I just had a thought, these beans would be lovely in biscotti. Taking note.
Chocolate Espresso Bean Shortbread Cookies
Makes 2 dozen
adapted from Baking:from my home to yours
1 Tablespoon Instant Espresso Powder
1 Tablespoon Very Hot Tap Water
2 Sticks Butter, room temperature
2/3 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
2 Cups All – Purpose Flour
4 ounces Chocolate Covered Espresso Beans, roughly chopped (or crushed with a rolling pin)
In a small bowl, dissolve instant espresso powder in hot tap water. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, beat together softened butter and powdered sugar until mixture is smooth ( a few minutes). Mix in the vanilla extract and dissolved espresso. Reduce speed of mixer and slowly add in flour. Mix until flour is incorporated, don’t over mix. Fold in chopped/crushed chocolate covered espresso beans.
Now, this is ingenious and totally unnecessary, but totally helpful. Scoop sticky dough into a 1 gallon Ziplock bag and place on a flat surface, leaving the bag ‘unzipped’. Roll dough out to the size of the ziplock bag making sure to keep the thickness consistent throughout. Refrigerate dough for at least 2 hours ( keep it flat in the fridge).
**you don’t have to have a Ziplock bag, roll it out and plastic wrap it, that’ll work too!**
And 2 hours later…
Preheat oven to 325°F.
Remove cookie dough from fridge and cut away the plastic bag. Cut dough into squares, measuring about 2 inches by 2 inches. Place cookies onto a cookie sheet (parchment lined is preferred) and with a fork, poke holes all the way through the cookies, repeat twice to each cookie. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Do not let the cookies can much color. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack. Dust with extra powder sugar if you would like.