In November of 2007, The Baltimore Sun revisited their favorite holiday cookie recipes. They reviewed 75 of their favorites from 2000 - 2006 and picked the top ten.
The one I adapted for today’s post was originally titled “Espresso Thumbprint Cookies,” by Donna Macek. Donna found the recipe in a supermarket magazine, of all places. The thumbprints are filled with a soft, fudgy espresso ganache. They sounded really good, but I decided to make a plain ganache filling and top it with Heath bar bits and a drizzle of ganache. These cookies are not quite as soft as other thumbprint cookies because the dough uses a whole egg instead of just the yolk(s). They also spread a little more than regular thumbprints. No matter, these will disappear fast from your cookie tray because they’re really, really good. And, like most Christmas cookies, they freeze well, so you can make them ahead.
|Chocolate-Heath Bar Thumbprints |
Adapted from The Baltimore Sun and Donna Macek
Rating: 9.5 out of 10
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3/4 cup salted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar, preferably superfine (whirl regular sugar in a food processor)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract or vanilla powder
1 large egg
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
Chocolate Ganache Filling (see recipe below)
Heath bar bits
Heat oven to 350F. Beat butter, sugar, vanilla and egg in a large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon. Stir in flour and salt. Shape dough into 1” balls. Place about 2” apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
Press thumb or end of a wooden spoon into center of each cookie ball. Bake 7-11 minutes, or till edges are firm. Quickly remake indentations with end of a wooden spoon. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make Chocolate Ganache Filling – Heat 1/4 cup heavy cream in a 1-quart (or smaller) saucepan over medium heat, stirring, until steaming. Remove from heat; stir in 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips till melted. Cool about 10 minutes, or till thickened. Spoon 3/4 of ganache into a plastic resealable sandwich bag. Spoon remaining ganache into another bag. Seal bags, squeezing out air. Snip one corner of each bag: the smaller bag with a very tiny snip for drizzling and the larger bag with a larger snip to squeeze out ganache into cookie cavities. Fill cavities with ganache. Sprinkle each cookie with some of the Heath bar bits. Drizzle remaining ganache from smaller bag onto cookie tops. Yield: about 3-1/2 dozen