Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies
- 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon instant espresso powder, optional
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup 2% milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/3 cup good quality red raspberry preserves (or jam)
In a small bowl, whisk the flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, salt, and instant espresso powder to combine; set the dry ingredients aside.
Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl, until light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs, one at a time, until completely incorporated. Stir in the milk and vanilla extract. Gradually blend the dry ingredients into the butter mixture, stirring well until blended. The cookie dough will be very soft. Refrigerate the dough for 2 hours or until the dough is chilled through.
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Line several half sheet pans with parchment paper or silicone baking mats; set the prepared pans aside.
Once the dough is firm enough to handle without sticking, roll the dough into sixty 1-inch balls. (Using a small, 1 ounce scoop works well.) Roll the cookie dough balls into powdered sugar to coat. Place the sugar coated balls of dough two inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets. Use your thumb to depress a well into the center of each cookie. Spoon a 1/4 teaspoon of raspberry jam into the "thumbprint"of each cookie.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until cookies are set and jam has melted. Remove cookies from the oven, allowing them to cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheets before transferring them to a wire rack to cool.
Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies are best enjoyed within 3 days of baking.
Recipe Notes: To achieve the "crackled" look of the cookies after baking, the cookie dough must be well chilled, and then coated in a thick layer of powdered sugar. Room temperature dough and/or too thin a layer of powdered sugar will result in cookies without the distinct crackled appearance. Cookies should be completely cooled before storing in a container. If storing in an airtight container, leave one corner of the container slightly ajar while storing the cookies, in order to preserve the crackled powdered sugar appearance.
*These values are approximate. Per serving, based on a 2,000 Calorie diet.