Sunday, January 30, 2011

Coffee Kisses

A different kind of kiss.

Have you decided what you are going to do for your sweetheart on Valentine's Day? Zack and I actually don't do much fro Valentine's Day. For the past four years we have been celebrating by cooking a nice dinner at home, exchanging sappy cards, and eating a tasty dessert. Often there is also a large Reese's Peanut Butter Heart involved.

You see, Zack does not have to do anything special for me for Valentines Day because he does sweet things for me all the time. For instance, a couple months ago Zack went to Europe. For quite some time I have been trying to get my hands on a cookbook: Full on Irish: Creative Contemporary Cooking. I am a HUGE fan of Kevin Dundon's food. I found the cookbook on Amazon, but it was ridiculously expensive. I had this great idea that it would be cheaper in Europe. I had no idea that I was sending Zack on a wild goose chase. The sweet husband of mine looked in every bookstore he could find to no avail. Being the great guy that he is, he brought be back a different cookbook: The Great British Book of Baking. Of course, he did not realize that every recipe in the book required the use of a kitchen scale (something I did not own), but that was beside the point. Everything in the cookbook looked fantastic so I bought and kitchen scale and the first thing I made was these Coffee Kisses. I modified the recipe from the original and used my Mocha Buttercream recipe for the filling. Let me tell you, these cookie...oh I mean biscuits....are FANTASTIC!

Coffee Kisses
cookie recipe adapted from The Great British Book of Baking, Buttercream recipe by Baked Perfection

For the cookie:

350g (approx. 2 3/4 cups) all purpose flour
150g (approx. 3/4 cup) sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
200g (1 stick and 6 tablunsalted butter, chilled and diced
4 teaspoons instant espresso
2 egg

For the filling:

1 stick of unsalted butter, softened
2 rounded teaspoons instant espresso dissolved in 2 teaspoons hot water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a food processor, put the flour, baking soda, and sugar into the bowl and pulse a couple of time to just combine. Add the butter and process until the mixture looks like fine crumbs. Dissolve the coffee in 2 teaspoons hot water. Beat the eggs until frothy and mix into the coffee. Pour into the processor and run the machine until the dough comes just together.

Roll the dough into 1 teaspoon sized balls and arrange on a baking sheet leaving 1.5-2 inches between each cookie. Baked in the pre-heated oven 12-15 minutes, until light golden and firm to touch. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. While cooling, prepare the buttercream.

Beat together the butter, espresso mixture, and vanilla extract until smooth. Slowly add the powdered sugar until completely combined. If the mixture is too thick, add milk to thin.

Sandwich the cookies with the mocha buttercream.