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Shortbread Hearts

  • yield: Makes 24
Photography: Luca Trovato




  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pound good-quality white chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon vegetable shortening
  • Red or other food coloring (optional)


  1. Step 1

    Combine flour and salt in a medium bowl; set aside. Place butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; beat until just combined. Do not whip. Add vanilla; mix. Add flour mixture; mix on low until dough starts to come together. Transfer to a floured board; knead into a ball. Wrap in plastic; chill 30 minutes.

  2. Step 2

    Heat oven to 350 degrees. Roll dough on a floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Cut out heart shapes using a 3-inch heart cookie cutter. Place hearts on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake until lightly browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

  3. Step 3

    While cookies bake, melt chocolate in a small bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water. Add shortening; whisk until smooth. Dip cooled shortbread into chocolate to coat surface evenly, or brush on with pastry brush; let set. Color remaining chocolate mixture, and pipe onto cookies as desired.

Martha Stewart Living, February 2001

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