Pistachio Shortbread & Hot Chocolate

O'Conaill's Chocolate Shop, Cork
O’Conaill’s Chocolate Shop, Cork
O'Conaill's Sweet Treats
O’Conaill’s Sweet Treats

Sometimes you just need a sweet treat and a couch night, and this recipe combo is just the ticket! I stumbled across this recipe in the Sunday Times as a teenager and have been making it every now and then since. My Dad is a bit of shortbread fiend. Shortbread and a cup of tea (Barry’s of course!) and he is happy, so that was why I made it originally but I have loved it ever since. This recipe is much nicer than the shop bought stuff and it lasts about 5-7 days in an airtight container.

The last time I made it, I decided to be very indulgent and make a hot chocolate from O’Conaill Chocolates in Cork to go with it. O’Conaill Chocolates is amazing, I started going there in school with a friend before our French grinds and it quickly became a weekly ritual! Not only is their handmade chocolate melted down with fresh creamy milk to make their famous hot chocolate, you can also add praline, orange oil, white chocolate… the list is endless and it really is like nothing you’ve ever tried before! You can also buy beautiful chocolate fudge, tiffin, brownies, cakes and more recently chocolate cake pops! It is soooo worth a visit if you are in Cork. My sister gifted me with a hot chocolate set from there, but if you aren’t from Cork you can do the same with any good quality chocolate.

It’s a delicious but heavy combo, so not recommended after a big meal!

Plate of Amazing Shortbread
Plate of Amazing Shortbread
O'Conaill Hot Chocolate
O’Conaill Hot Chocolate


Pistachio Shortbread Ingredients:

90g caster sugar

240g butter softened

360g plain flour

¼ tsp sea salt

75g pistachios chopped (you can use a hand blender for a few seconds to chop- this will make some nuts powdery but some chunky which gives a nice texture & taste throughout)

  1. Preheat oven to 165C.
  2. Cream up sugar & butter until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in flour and salt
  4. Add in nuts until just combined.
  5. Remove dough from from bowl and shape in to two rectangular logs.
  6. Chill for 30mins.
  7. Brush cold logs with a few drops of water, sprinkle with caster sugar and then slice the logs in to 1cm biscuits & place on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper.
  8. Leave space between biscuits to bake evenly.
  9. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes (they should remain pale in colour)
  10. Let cool on wire rack.


Hot Chocolate Ingredients:

One glass of milk

One heaped teaspoon cocoa (I used from O’Conaill’s kit)

Two tablespoons of O’Conaill’s chocolate drops (mine were a mix of white, milk & dark chocolate- any good quality chocolate chopped up would work well though)

  1. Mix cocoa with 2 tbsp milk in a saucepan until it forms a paste. Stir in rest of milk, and turn on the hob to a medium heat. Add in chocolate until melted. Enjoy!
Cream Butter and Sugar
Cream Butter and Sugar
Add Pistachios
Add Pistachios
Start Shaping your Dough
Start Shaping your Dough
Chill the Dough
Chill the Dough
Slice up Biscuits
Slice up Biscuits
Happy with my Shortbread
Happy with my Shortbread
Add Chocolate Drops to Cocoa Milk
Add Chocolate Drops to Cocoa Milk


Munchie Time
Munchie Time

10 thoughts on “Pistachio Shortbread & Hot Chocolate”

  1. I never made the shortbread dough. Is it difficult? Here, in Spain we don’t have the tradition ( as you have) of making shortbread( which is a shame….)so that I don’t know if it’s difficult to work with or to bake it..You use goat milk instead of cow milk, is it better?thanks!Love your recipes!

    1. Its really easy actually! Just don’t over-mix it, it shouldn’t be soft like cake mix, it should be much firmer. You can give it a quick mix initially like I did with a blender (just a few seconds to mix flour with butter), but you must use your hands to shape the dough together. It is easy though, I promise! It makes a lot so great for sharing! I was in San Sebastien recently and there seemed to be a lot of Florentines on sale (which I love). What would Spanish traditional biscuits be? Regarding the Goats Milk, that’s just a personal preference as I am not meant to drink Cows Milk as I have eczema and it aggravates it. Use cows milk if that what you usually use, Goats milk is much creamier but has a slightly different taste. I love it, but just stick to what you like!

      1. I’d love to get my hands on some of O’Conaills cooking chocolate but I live in Kildare and I can’t find it anywhere. I’ve tried phoning them at the shop and can’t get an answer. Can someone help me get in touch with them?

      2. Hi Alison, actually now that you mention it they are very hard to get in touch with- no website, facebook or twitter! I have the phone number 021 4373407 which I found on Yelp but you probably have that. I could have popped in at the weekend for you when I was in town, won’t be home for a good while now though- heading to Australia for a month soon. Maybe try calling again? They totally should be on social media, they have such a fan base! I haven’t seen their stuff sold outside Cork though…

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