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Chocolate Chip Shortbread and Free Time

OK yeah, I did complain about my husband’s new schedule on Twitter yesterday (he is home now almost EVERY afternoon), but today, I am feeling a bit differently.  I am at my daughter’s dance class without my two year old son to keep busy.  I couldn’t be happier!  Yes, this means no more Friday night football for him but it does mean he will get to watch it on Sunday, all day on the couch.

Mixing in the coffee mixture and vanilla

My frustration with his sitting on the couch all day yesterday watching football while I was cleaning up, cutting coupons, making lists, grocery shopping, making dinner and then cleaning up after dinner, motivated me to do the dishes last night instead of waiting till the morning.  Just that little thing helped me get ahead in my day today and left me with some time to bake when I was afraid I wouldn’t have any time and now I have time to myself to write a blog post when otherwise I would be trying to entertain my toddler son at a dance studio with limited distractions for him.  Plus, I got loads of extra stuff done today!  I started work on my daughter’s wand for her Halloween costume and I fixed a drawer in our kitchen that had been out of commission for about a month.

After rolling it out in the bag, weird but it works!

While I will now have to deal with him yelling at the dumbest things (he shrieks as if he has been stabbed or cusses loudly when something simple happens like accidentally dropping something on the floor, a habit that drives me BONKERS!) and maybe DVRing more of my shows instead of watching when they are on, I guess it is worth it for some free time for me and more time with the kids for him.

These Shortbread Chocolate Chip Cookies were what I had time to bake today.  I thought they were just OK but my super duper picky (ask anyone) four year old said they were her favorite of anything I have ever baked (she normally flat out refuses to eat things I bake because god forbid there is a blueberry or a nut in something). If I did have it to do over again I would have used salted butter, though.  I really think, for me, that would have made all the difference.

My GeekyLink for today is a site I had heard about from Entertainment Weekly.  If you have read the The Hunger Games and are a fan and can’t wait for the movie, you might want to check out this site The Capitol where you can figure out what District you are in.  Really, they just place you in a District and there are certain districts that are active now and you can get a district badge.  You can then like your District on Facebook.  The site itself is really cool with a few neat things to look at along with a countdown to The Hunger Games, the movie, but done as a countdown to a “real” Hunger Games.

Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies

From use real butter


1 tablespoon instant espresso powder

1 tablespoon boiling water

1 stick unsalted (or salted) butter, room temperature

2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

confectioners’ sugar for dusting (optional)


Dissolve espresso powder in boiling water and set aside to cool to tepid or you can do what I did and use what was left of my pot of coffee and mix in a bit of instant to make it a bit stronger, enough to make about 1 1/4 tablespoons of liquid.

Beat butter and sugar together on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth.  Beat in vanilla and espresso (or coffee mixture), then reduce mixer speed to low and add flour, mixing only until it disappears into the dough.  Don’t work the dough much once the flour is incorporated.

Fold in the chocolate chips with a sturdy rubber spatula.  Transfer the dough to a gallon size ziploc bag.  Put bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll the dough into about a 9×10 inch rectangle that is approximately 1/4 inch thick.  As you roll, flip and turn the bag occasionally and lift the plastic from the dough so it doesn’t cause creases.  When you get the right size and thickness, seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible.  Refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.

Preheat the oven to 325°.  Put the plastic bag on a cutting board and slit it open.  Turn the dough out onto the board and using a sharp knife, cut the dough into approximately 2 inch squares (I made mine slightly bigger).  Carefully transfer the squares to the baking sheets.  Bake one sheet at a time for 18-20 minutes.  The shortbreads will be very pale, they shouldn’t take on much color.  Transfer the cookies to a rack.  If you’d like, dust the cookies with confectioners’ sugar while they are still hot.  Cool the cookies to room temperature before serving.  Makes about two dozen depending on the size of your cookies.

About NerdyBaker

My name is Celina. I am a wife and mother of three. I love to bake, go to the movies, read when I can and I am kind of a great big nerd. Just don't tell my husband.

6 responses »

  1. If you want a hands-on Hunger Games website, try It’s an ARG site, and it puts you in the Hunger Games.

  2. This looks delicious! I’ve been thinking of making shortbread for a while- might try this recipe! 🙂


  3. I’m a big sucker for short bread anything. Think I might give this one a go


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