Mocha Almond Shortbread Bars

I love shortbread cookies, and with a cup of  tea it’s is so perfection. I ran across these at a local cafe and eatery in uptown(Gigi’s). They were so amazing! I ordered this huge bar of this coffee shortbread cookie with almond slivers and chocolate chips pressed in it was just crumbly buttery bliss, and just over halfway through I realized I was supposed to share with my husband.

A few months ago I sent a batch to my Aunt Maria, she said they were very good and was going to be sharing with my other aunts when they were stopping by the coming weekend, I never got the result but I hope it was good. I knew they were a success because my husband was trying to eat them as I was putting them in the tuperware to send. The recipe is basic, simple and quick. What else could you want in a cookie? Oh, chocolate? Yep! It has that too.

Mocha Almond Shortbread Bars

  • 1 c Unsalted Butter, room tempature
  • 2/3 c Frosting Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 tsp Almond Extract
  • 1 tbsp Espresso Powder
  • 1 tbsp Water, boiling hot
  • 1/8 cup Chocolate Chips, finely chopped
  • 2 c Unbleached Flour
  • 1/3 c Slivered Almonds, crushed
  • 1/3 c Chocolate Chips

In a 9×13 pan. Line with a 20″x9″ piece of wax paper so it forms a type of tray so you can lift the bars out of the pan when finished cooking.

In a stand mixer on medium cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.   In a small cup combine the vanilla and almond extract, espresso powder, and boiling water.  Stir until the powder has dissolved.  With the mixer on medium speed add to the butter mixture until well combined.

Turn mixer down to low and add in the flour until well combined. The dough will be soft and sticky similar to sugar cookie dough. Fold in the finely chopped chocolate chips into the moist dough. Turn it out into the prepared pan and press down pushing into the corners of the pan. When the dough is leveled sprinkle the almonds and other portion chocolate chips on to the dough and gently press down into the dough to secure.

Cover and place pan into the fridge for 1 hour.

When ready to bake preheat oven to 350°F

Bake for 18-20 min until edges are lightly browned and center is firm to the touch.

Cool for 30 min remove from pan by lifting the ends of the wax paper and place on a cutting board. Cut into 12 bars and store in air tight container for upto two weeks.

Adapted: Annie’s Eats

Baking Pans

The darker the pan the faster it cooks.  Glass also cooks quickly, with the quicker cooking your baked goods tend to overcook or get brown bottoms and edges.  Generally when you use a dark or glass pan you should drop the temperature by 25°F

For baking evenly with even color go for light aluminum pans will give you a nice color and cooking without brown edges.  I am a fan of the Nordicware or Fat Daddy bakeware for cakes, cookies, quick-breads, or yeast breads where you don’t want a thick dark crust.  The cakes don’t dome up, which means a lot less waste when leveling the cakes out for layering.  Also, the cookies cook evenly without darker edges and a nice consistent color.

However! in regards to cupcakes or muffins where you want that dome effect I would and do suggest going with a dark colored pan.  It will heat up faster and rise higher giving you a lovely dome shape.