Imagine roasted nuts in a shortbread-style biscuit, sandwiched with bittersweet chocolate icing. Now stop imagining and get baking.
- 180 g unsalted butter, softened
- 50 g brown sugar
- 1 tbsp very strong coffee, cooled
- 200 g (1⅓ cups) plain flour
- 50 g (½ cup) cornflour
- 100 g hazelnuts, lightly roasted, roughly chopped
Chocolate butter icing
- 70 g unsalted butter, softened
- 55 g (⅓ cup) icing sugar, sifted
- 35 g (⅓ cup) cocoa powder, sifted
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Cooling time allow to cool completely
Preheat oven to 180°C. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar and coffee until light and pale. Add the flours and hazelnuts, and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined. The mixture can be quite soft and, if you’re making this on a warm day, you may need to refrigerate it for a bit prior to rolling.
Roll 3 tsp mixture to make about 30 even-sized balls. Place on oven trays lined with baking paper about 3cm apart. Using a fork or two fingers, press down biscuits so they flatten out to a little less than 1cm in height. Bake in the centre of the oven, swapping trays halfway, for 14 minutes or until biscuits start to brown on the bottom and just start to colour on top. Cool on trays until firm, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the icing, beat butter with the sugar and cocoa until thick. Spread onto the base of 15 cooled biscuits and sandwich with remaining biscuits while icing is still soft. If you and the family don’t eat them all as soon as they’re made, they taste even better a few hours later when the icing has firmed somewhat. Store the biscuits in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
Photography Alan Benson