Stamped Heart Shortbread Cookies

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Introduction: Stamped Heart Shortbread Cookies

About: I am a Graphic Designer by trade and a passionate crafter, tinkerer, and inventor at heart

Valentine's day can inspire a wide range of emotions. I wanted to create a series of cookies that could express some of these emotions in a visual and edible way. This batch of stamped heart shortbread cookies celebrates all the feelings - whether you're sweet, spicy, sour, bitter or salty this valentine's day... there's a cookie for you!

This recipe makes 5 mini batches of 8 cookies, for a total yield of 40 cookies.

The base recipe for these cookies is shortbread, and each mini batch is stamped, colored, and flavored to match the emotion with which they represent:

  • Sweet (pink; raw sugar toping)
  • Spicy (orange; cinnamon)
  • Sour (yellow; lemon),
  • Bitter (green; matcha/green tea)
  • Salty (blue; sea salt)

Happy Baking!

Step 1: Ingredients / Tools

COOKIE INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 15 Tbs salted butter **just under 2 sticks/cups
  • 15 Tbs of sugar ** just under 2 cups
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

FLAVOURING INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tsp cinnomon
  • 1 Tbs raw sugar
  • 1 Tbs lemon zest **about half a lemon
  • 1 tsp matcha/green tea powder
  • 1 Tbs sea salt ** I used a fancy smoked sea salt

OPTIONAL INGRDIENTS

  • Food colouring

TOOLS

  • 5 small bowls
  • 1 medium bowl
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • baking sheet / cookie pan ** I use two at a time
  • parchment paper
  • spatula (the pancake flipping kind)
  • plastic wrap

STAMP OPTIONS

  • 3d printed stamps **I had mine made by the wonderful Paige Russell ( check out her instructables page here ). She used Tinkercad to make the stamps. Two great resources that can aid you in making your own are this class or this pendant instructable that can easily be modified to be a stamp. Just don't forget to reverse the test :)
  • Letter Stamps for papercraft ** The imprint is not as deep or clear as the 3D stamp, but in a pinch it works. Line up the letters and tape them together for easier use.
  • Alphabet cookie stamps** I have never tried these and cannot vouch for their performance, but they look promising.

Step 2: Wet Mix

  • Divide the butter up into five 3tbs portions and put each in a separate small bowl. ** I find it easiest to do this step while the butter is still firm and then let it come to room temperature (approx 1 hr)
  • Add 3 tbs of sugar to each bowl and cream together until smooth.
  • Optional: Add food coloring to each bowl and mix well.
    • Orange: 1 drop red, 2 drop yellow;
    • Pink: 2 drops red;
    • Yellow: 2 drops yellow
    • Green: 1 drop green
    • Blue: 2 drops blue
  • In a small bowl or cup, scrammble one egg WELL. Then portion it out into the 5 separate bowls by adding 1 tsp to each of them and repeating until egg is done or you have 3 tsp of egg mix in each.** It is much easier to pour the scrambled egg into the tsp than it is to try to scoop out a tsp from the scrambled egg.
  • Add 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract to each of the 5 small bowls
  • Mix the contents of each bowl until creamy. ** at the beginning things may look a little clumpy and slimy ( I know, yum :S ), but if you keep mixing it will become smooth and creamy


Step 3: Dry Mix

  • In a medium bowl, mix 2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour with 1/2 tsp of baking powder.
  • Mix well to make sure that the baking powder is dispersed throughout.

Step 4: Making the Dough

Now you will make the 5 separate doughs for each mini flavor batch:

1. Spicy (orange):

  • Add 1 tsp cinnomon to wet ingredients in "spicy" bowl. Mix well.
  • Add 1/4 cup of flour. Mix until completely incorporated and mix resembles frosting.
  • Add another 1/4 cup of flour to the bowl.
  • Mix until the dough begins to clump, then kneed with hands into a ball.

2. Sweet (pink):

  • Add 1/4 cup of flour to the wet ingredients of the "sweet" bowl.
  • Mix until completely incorporated and mix resembles frosting.
  • Add another 1/4 cup of flour to the bowl.
  • Mix until the dough begins to clump, then kneed with hands into a ball.

3. Sour (orange):

  • Add 1 Tbs lemon zest to wet ingredients in "sour" bowl. Mix well.
  • Add 1/4 cup of flour.
  • Mix until completely incorporated and mix resembles frosting.
  • Add another 1/4 cup of flour to the bowl.
  • Mix until the dough begins to clump, then kneed with hands into a ball.

4. Bitter (green):

  • Add 1tsp matcha/green tea powder to wet ingredients in "bitter" bowl. Mix well.
  • Add 1/4 cup of flour.
  • Mix until completely incorporated and mix resembles frosting.
  • Add another 1/4 cup of flour to the bowl.
  • Mix until the dough begins to clump, then kneed with hands into a ball.

5.Salty (blue):

  • Add 1 tsp cinnomon to wet ingredients in "salty" bowl. Mix well.
  • Add 1/4 cup of flour.
  • Mix until completely incorporated and mix resembles frosting.
  • Add another 1/4 cup of flour to the bowl.
  • Mix until the dough begins to clump, then kneed with hands into a ball.

IMPORTANT NOTE: When you are done making the last dough ball, you may find that there is still flour left over. This has always been the case for me, and I'm pretty sure it has to do with the fact that when you mix the flour and baking soda, you are also adding air to the mix and increasing the volume. YOU NEED THIS FLOUR!!! So I add 1 tbs of flour to each dough ball to start, and if there is still flour left over, I add it to the dough balls that feel most sticky.

Step 5: Rolling Dough Sheets

This is a good time to set your oven to 340 degrees F.

  • Place each dough ball in between 2 sheets of parchment paper ** my preference is to squash it down a little to get the rolling process started smoothly.
  • Roll the dough out into a 1/4 inch thick sheet.
  • Place all of the dough sheets in the freezer for 15 minutes to chill.

Step 6: Baking

  • Cut as many cookies from your initial dough sheets as will fit on your cookie pans for baking. ** I use two cookie sheets and can put 2 of each cookies on each pan.
  • SWEET COOKIES: ADD granulated raw sugar to top of Sweet Cookies. Press gently with the back of a spoon
  • SALTY COOKIES: ADD sea salt to top of Salty Cookies. Press gently with the back of a spoon
  • Place plastic wrap over cookie pan and place in freezer for 5 minutes.
  • After cookie pan has been in the freezer for 5 minutes, place cookie pan in 340 degree F oven.
  • Bake for 4 minutes. Check, rotate cookie pan, and bake for another 3-5 minutes until bottom edges are browning. ** I use the lemon cookies as my gauge. They are the easiest to see the browning on. If after 9 minutes they are not browning, keep cooking and watch for browning. Your freezer may be colder than mine and the cookies may take longer to bake because of that.
  • IMMEDIATELY after removing cookies from oven, press with stamps. ** if you wait too long the cookie will set. I choose to stamp after baking because I found that it leaves a much more clear and defined imprint than doing it before baking.
  • Let cookies rest on cookie pan for 3-5 minutes until cooled enough to transfer to a cooling rack.
  • Gather left over dough into balls and re-roll the dough sheets. Place in freezer for 15 minutes. ** I multitask and do this while my cookie pans are chilling, but if you like less chaos in your kitchen, feel free to work on one batch at time
  • Once dough sheets have been in freezer for 15 minutes, repeat the above process, until you are out of cookie dough.

Note: It's rare that you will every have exactly the right amount of dough, and you're often left with a little bit extra that is not quite large enough to make another cookie out of. I call this the chef's treat and make a small patty to bake for myself. It's my reward, and lets me taste the cookies without having to ruin one of the good ones.

Step 7: Enjoy!

You did it! Now go spread some Valentine's day feelings around :)

Step 8: Alternative "quick" Version

If you don't want to bother with making 5 separate doughs from the start, you can make one "base" dough using the flour, baking soda, butter, sugar, egg and vanilla. Follow the same procedure you would for the smaller batches, substituting out the amounts in this recipe for the whole quantity in the "ingredients" section. Once your base dough is complete separate into 5 equal parts and add the "flavor ingredients" and coloring to each 1/5th of dough. Although this is a quicker way to make the dough, you do get a more blotchy looking cookie due to the fact that you are adding the food coloring to the dough when it is finished instead of creaming itinto the butter at the beginning. I do like the "tie-dye" effect, but it really hurts the legibility of the stamp imprint, and so i opted for a more even color process.

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    12 Comments

    These are amazing! For the spicy ones, you could do red chilli and cherry flavour!

    1 reply

    What a great idea !! That sounds like a delicious flavor combo :)

    Guh! These came out so cute! Also that finger spatula is just about the best novelty kitchen tools I've ever seen.

    1 reply

    Awwww thank you Audrey. And YESSSS this spatula was purchased solely on because of it's branding ( it's called the batter finger) , but quickly became one of the most useful utensil we own! So glad you picked that out :)

    These are so great! They turned out really well :)

    1 reply

    Thank you Natalie ! You're spectacular contributions really made this ible super awesome!! Thanks for the feedback :)

    Ultra cute and beautifully presented when wrapped. Great instructable too. Anyone would call the giver sweetheart after receiving such a nice gift.

    1 reply

    Thank you ClareBS. That's so "sweet" of you to say !

    Thank you! The lemon and the sea salt one's were my favorite :)