This is not a traditional shortbread as it has an egg and baking powder. However, I find that adding these gives it a lighter texture that goes well with the chocolate better than traditional shortbread does.
Makes 16-18 Cookies
1 cup hazelnuts (filberts)
1 cup spelt flour plus 2 tbsp
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup organic sugar or 2/3 cup organic yellow brown sugar or (yellow brown sugar adds extra flavour – you can also mix the two)
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
4 ounces good-quality semisweet chocolate
1.25 oz butter (about 2 1/2 tbsp) or 2 tbsp coconut oil
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Put hazelnuts in a shallow pan and roast for 10 minutes. Let cool. Rub the hazelnuts so that the skins are removed and place in a food processor. Do not worry if all the skins do not come off. Process until they are small bits. Set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl. Add the egg. Scrape the bowl and mix again. Add the flour, nuts, baking powder, sea salt and vanilla. Mix well. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a clean surface. Role the dough into a log about 6-8 inches long and about an 1-2 inches in diameter. Wrap in parchment or plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for 1 -2 hours or until firm. If the log is not round, it can be made rounder by rolling it on a clean surface after it has formed up in the refrigerator. Slice the cookies into 1/4 inch circles. Place each circle on a cookie sheet lined with parchment, spread one inch apart. Bake for 12 -15 minutes at 350 degrees F. Let cool
To Dip The Cookies: Melt the chocolate and butter together in a small bowl resting in a small pot of simmering water (double boiler) and mix until smooth. Dip the cookies in the chocolate mixture. If it is not deep enough to cover half the cookie, then lean the cookie forward so that it covers half. Let the cookies rest on a tray or rack until the chocolate sets. Serve.
A Tip About Chocolate: Pure chocolate needs to be tempered in order to have a nice shine. Otherwise, it blooms, which means the cocoa butter separates out of the chocolate and the creates a white film over the chocolate. Adding some butter or coconut oil to the chocolate helps prevent blooming somewhat but they need to be stored in the refrigerator if not serving the same day. Pure chocolate can also be used if serving right away. The cookies can be made ahead of time (and therefore do not need to be refrigerator) and dipped shortly before serving. They do need to set so put them in the refrigerator to help the chocolate set quickly. I have left these out of the refrigerator for a couple of days with no issue but I would not do it longer than that. Store inan airtight container.