by Sofia Gallo
A spin on a classic Italian cookie in time for Christmas teas. This lovely chocolate shortcrust recipe has been enhanced by the addition of ground cinnamon and filled with caramel and a hint of sea salt. Try this Occhi di Bue today!
Prep: 15 min
Bake: 15 min
Makes 10 sandwiched biscuits – or less depending on the cutter or enough for a medium tart
- 125 g unsalted butter, softened
- 90 g caster sugar
- 2 egg yolks – about 40 g
- 180 g 00 flour – if not available, any flour with low protein content
- 20 g bitter cocoa powder
- 1 heaped tsp of cinnamon
- Pinch of sea salt
- To assemble: Set caramel already made, sea salt – recipe for homemade caramel
- Sieve together flour, cinnamon and cocoa powder in a bowl and add a pinch of salt.
- Cream your butter and sugar together with the help of a fork. This will keep the temperature of the butter consistent.
- Add the egg yolks one at the time, and combine fully. Once you have a pomade like consistency dough, add your dry ingredients.
- Mix them together first to a sand like consistency, then bring the ingredients together into a smooth dough ball.
- Place the dough between two lightly floured pieces of parchment paper and roll it to a 4 mm thickness. Cut your cookie shapes and carry on until the dough is finished.
- Half of the cookies will have an eye in them. For these I used a little star shape, but you could just use the back of a piping bag tip or a small round cutter.
- Lay the cookies on baking trays and place them in the fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes. They will need to be baked from cold to keep their shape.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees C/ Gas mark 4 for about 12-15 minutes. The cookies should still be a little soft and will solidify when completely cooled down.
- To assemble: place about a tsp of caramel in the middle of the base, and jam the tops. Sprinkle with a little more of sea salt. Optional: for a more Christmassy look, try and decorate with royal icing, a great way of also using the leftover egg whites.
Caramel recipe. You can buy already made caramel, or if you would like to give it a go, you could either bake the content of sweetened condensed milk or, follow the below recipe:
- 200 grams caster sugar
- 120 ml double cream
- 70 g unsalted butter
- 2 tsp salt
Heat sugar and butter in a saucepan over medium heat, once of a maple like colour, pour the cream, being mindful of this passage. Add salt and pour into a glass container to cool down. Try and whip this when cooled completely, for a lovely smooth consistency.