It’s time to officially declare Valentine’s Day as my favorite holiday. It has nothing to do with romance and everything to do with chocolate. It’s the one holiday where chocolate is the gift of choice and so today I’m gifting you a recipe for Strawberry & White Chocolate Sablé Hearts. Buttery vanilla bean flecked sablé cookies that are dipped in a swirled mixture of strawberry and white chocolate. For extra glamour, I’ve finished them with speckled gold colored cocoa butter and edible gold leaf. They’re all dressed up and ready for gifting or for treating yourself. Happy Valentine’s Day!
Helpful Tips For This Recipe
*The fussiest part of this recipe is tempering the strawberry and white chocolate. If you’ve never tempered chocolate before, I’ve provided a link to Valrhona Chocolates tempering online tutorial and also my own quick method to tempering at home. Take your time and use a thermometer. In the end, if your temper doesn’t come out perfectly the cookies will still be beautiful and taste great.
*When decorating the cookies, work quickly! It’ll be tempting to try and make each cookie perfectly swirled, but the cold cookies will start to cool down the chocolate as soon as the first one is dipped. Give yourself 10 minutes to dip all the cookies and bask in their glory.
*If you don’t have vanilla beans on hand, feel free to substitute it with 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract. I’m a big fan of aromatic vanilla bean seeds flecked throughout a buttery dough, but vanilla beans are very expensive right now. Using extract will still create an excellent tasting cookie.
*The gold colored cocoa butter and edible gold leaf are optional decorations. I was going for glamour with this design, but you can skip them and go for a minimal chocolate dipped cookie that is equally as beautiful.
Strawberry & White Chocolate Sablé Hearts
Makes 14 Sablé Hearts
8 ounces (226g) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
¼ cup (30g) confectioners’ sugar
½ teaspoon fine sea salt, such as fleur de sel
2 large egg yolks
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
2 cups (272g) all-purpose flour
8 ounces (228g) Valrhona STRAWBERRY INSPIRATION
8 ounces (228g) Valrhona IVOIRE 35% white chocolate
Gold Colored Cocoa Butter, optional
Edible Gold Leaf, optional
In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, both sugars, sea salt, and vanilla bean seeds on medium speed for 3 minutes. Stop mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add egg yolks and mix until combined. On low, add flour and mix just until combined (do not overmix the dough).
Transfer dough onto a large sheet of parchment paper set on a clean work surface. Place a second sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough and roll out to ¼-inch thick. If preferred, you can divide the dough in half and roll out two smaller portions between parchment sheets. Slide the parchment encased dough onto a baking sheet and freeze for at least 1 hour (or up to 1 month if wrapped airtight).
Preheat the oven to 350F (177C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Remove dough sheet from freezer and peel away both pieces of paper, then put the dough back on one piece of paper. Using a 3 ½-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut the dough and carefully set each heart onto the prepared baking sheet, spaced about 1-inch apart. As the cookies bake, you can gently gather the scraps together, reroll, freeze, and cut until all the dough has been used.
Bake the cookies for 13-15 minutes or until the cookies are lightly golden brown around the edges. Remove from the oven and let cookies rest for about 10 minutes, on the baking sheet, before transferring to a rack to cool completely.
Temper the STRAWBERRY INSPIRATION by heating it to 95F – 104F, then cool it to 81F – 82F before heating it back up to 86F – 88F. Keep it at working temperature (86F – 88F) while you temper the IVOIRE white chocolate.
Temper the IVOIRE 35% white chocolate by heating it to 113F – 118F, then cool it to 79F – 81F before heating it back up to 82F – 84F. Keep it at working temperature (82F – 84F) for decorating cookies.
Note: If the tempered chocolates begin to cool down at any time, under their temper ranges, place their bowls over a saucepan of simmering water for a few seconds to gently reheat. Or, reheat in the microwave for 5-10 second intervals. Stir well and use a thermometer to keep track of the temperature. If needed, do a temper test by dipping a clean dry knife into the chocolate and allow it to sit on the counter for a few minutes (or pop it in the fridge for a minute). If it’s correctly tempered, the chocolate will set shiny and firm.
To decorate the cookies, add a few spoonfuls of STRAWBERRY INSPIRATION to the IVOIRE white chocolate bowl and swirl together using a toothpick. Dip one cookie, face down, into the chocolate (don’t be afraid to get your fingertips dirty here- make sure the chocolate reaches all around the top edges of the cookie). Lift cookie directly up and out of the chocolate, then wait a few seconds to allow the excess chocolate to flow off (give it a little shake to remove more chocolate). Turn cookie over and run your index finger around the entire edge of the cookie to create a clean border of chocolate. Place cookie on parchment lined baking sheet and let set. Repeat with the remaining cookies, adding fresh spoonfuls of strawberry to the white chocolate every couple of cookies to keep the swirled effect looking fresh. To finish, splatter each cookie with melted gold colored cocoa butter and apply edible gold leaf.
Store Strawberry & White Chocolate Sablé Hearts in an airtight container, at room temperature, for up to 1 week.
Sablé recipe adapted from Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan.