These cookies were very easy to make, and they seem quite fancy, cause of the chocolate and cherry combination, which always tastes like a celebration. Basically, they’re a coconut shortbread covered with a thin layer of cherry preserves, and topped with a chocolate ganache. Like a version of millionaire’s shortbread, I guess! I put a bit of sherry into the shortbread to make them taste extra Christmassy.
I know I’ve been posting a lot of Jimmy Smith, lately, but he’s just killing me! His songs are so warm, and pleasing, but completely unexpected in parts, till he brings it all home again. Here’s We Three Kings. I love how grand and big band-y it is, before it breaks into this ridiculously joyous and swinging tune.
1 1/4 sticks unsalted butter, softened (10 tablespoons)
1 cup icing sugar
1 t vanilla
1 T sherry
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 t salt
2/3 cup shredded coconut
1/2 (+/-) cup good cherry preserves
1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350.
Cream the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the sugar till nice and smooth, and then beat in the egg. Stir in the vanilla and sherry. Add the flour and salt, and stir till you have a fairly stiff batter. Mix in the coconut.
Butter and flour a brownie tin or roasting pan that’s about 8 X 12, or thereabouts. Spread the batter in an even layer on the bottom – flour it lightly if it sticks to your fingers. Spread a thin layer of good cherry preserves on top. Sprinkle the chocolate chips as evenly as possible over the jam.
Bake for about half an hour, till the shortbread that peeks through on the edges of the pan looks golden brown.
As soon as the chocolate chips melt, you can use a spatula to make a smooth layer, and then return to the oven for the rest of the baking.
Let cool completely so that the chocolate sets before you cut them into bars. (I let mine cool in the fridge.)