Chocolate is such a big part of Christmastime and I can’t imagine not making a cookie without something rich, cream filled, and super chocolaty. Chocolate ganache is a mixture of chocolate and heavy whipping cream, which is melted together and then cooled, to thicken into a spreadable frosting-like filling, or topping. It’s one of those things that tastes only minutes to put together, but requires a little patience, so it achieves a desirable consistency when cooled.
Most families have made a batch of thumbprint cookies. I remember as a kid, thumbprints were always in our holiday cookie plates, but they were usually blonde or vanilla based, and filled with raspberry jam. These shortbread filled cookies were a family favorite and us kids enjoyed helping mom in the kitchen by offering our little thumbs to make an indent in each center.
My version of this cookie goes dark pretty fast because it’s made with rich cocoa powder and other dry ingredients. The contrasting chocolaty flavors of the baked cookie bottom with a soft and creamy ganache filling is a delectable thing. They are the perfect cookie to keep out for Santa and his elves with a big glass of milk.
16 tablespoons room temperature butter
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup dark cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt + more for topping
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup bittersweet chocolate, chips or chunks
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
(Makes 2 Dozen)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For Ganache – in a microwavable bowl or measuring cup, add bittersweet chocolate and cream. Heat on high for 1 minute, remove and stir. Heat again for 30 seconds and stir until smooth. Place in refrigerator to stiffen up, stirring every 30 minutes until thickened to a spreadable consistency, similar to frosting.
- For Cookies – beat butter and brown sugar in a stand mixer on high for 3 minutes. Scrape down sides and add yolks. Mix for 1 minute until incorporated. Pour in vanilla and mix for 30 seconds.
- Sift together remaining dry ingredients and add them to bowl. Mix on low for 1 minute or until dough begins to come together.
- Scoop dough out by teaspoonfuls and roll into balls. Press thumb or round teaspoon into center. Bake for 10 minutes, remove and cool. Repeat with remaining dough.
- When Ganache is a good consistency, fill center of cookies. Sprinkle with salt. Store in refrigerator and remove 30 minutes before serving or serve immediately. Enjoy!