These Narutomaki Shortbread Cookies are made with classic butter shortbread cookies, coated in white chocolate and decorated with pink dyed white chocolate to look like the Japanese fish cake – “narutomaki”.
I don’t normally make decorated cookies, since my decorating skill is pretty much nonexistent. But while I was going through my shortbread phase, which will probably never end, I somehow though it would be so much fun to make them look like narutomaki. I dipped them in white chocolate and Ryan piped the pink swirls. Go team!
If you’re unfamiliar, narutomaki is a type of kamaboko or Japanese fish cake, usually eaten with ramen, udon, saimin, basically all sort of Japanese and Hawaiian noodle dishes. However, you won’t be eating these Narutomaki Shortbread Cookies with any noodles. I’d recommend some type of beverage like coffee and tea instead. 😉
Narutomaki Shortbread Cookies Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Allow butter to soften at room temperature, but not melted. You only want it soft enough to be malleable, but not so much that the cookie dough becomes a sticky mess.
- I use a fluted Linzer cookie cutter without the insert for this recipe to get the shape of the kamaboko.
- Freezing the sliced cookies before baking will allow them to keep their shape better in the oven and is absolutely necessary in my book.
- If you’re a pro at decorating, you can freehand the swirls. But a small lazy Susan can help make this step a little easier. Though a lot of practice will also help.
Did you enjoy this recipe? Would you like to see more decorative/novelty type recipes on the blog? Let me know in the comment or shoot me an email! I also welcome any and all recommendation/request. 🙂
Some More Pretty Shortbread Cookies
- Valentine’s Day Stained Glass Shortbread Cookies
- Classic Shortbread Cookies
- Lemon Poppy Seed Shortbread Cookies
📖 Recipe card
"Narutomaki" Shortbread Cookies
- 4 ounce unsalted butter
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- Extra sugar for sprinkling
- ¾ cup of white chocolate
- A few drops of red food coloring
To make the cookies:
- Let butter soften at room temperature out on the counter, but not melted.
- Measure out flour and salt into a medium mixing bowl, mix well to distribute thoroughly.
- Add sugar, soften butter and vanilla extract to the stand mixer bowl and beat with the paddle attachment until combined.
- Reduce mixer speed to low, and slowly add the flour mixture. Continue to mix on low speed until dough comes together. It should pull away from the side of the mixing bowl.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured board or counter top, and shape into a disk.
- Wrap well with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Roll dough to about ¼” thick and cut out cookies with a 2” fluted cookie cutter. Re-roll the scrap dough and cut out more cookies until finished.
- Place the cookies in a container in layers, with parchment paper in between, and freeze for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°F while the cookies are resting in the freezer.
- When the oven is ready, place cookies on a parchment line baking sheet an inch or two apart, sprinkle granulated sugar over the top of cookies generously and bake for 16 - 17 minutes just until the bottom is lightly brown.
- Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To decorate the cookies:
- Melt ½ cup of white chocolate in a heat proof glass bowl over a small pot of simmering water over medium low heat, double boiler style.
- Dip the cookies face down in the melted chocolate, let the excess run off back into the bowl and flip them over onto the parchment line baking sheet to harden.
- Once the white chocolate layer cools and hardens completely, melt the remaining ¼ cup of white chocolate in the same heat proof glass bowl over a small pot of simmering water over medium low heat, double boiler style.
- When the chocolate melted completely, add 2 - 4 drops of red food coloring and mix thoroughly until you get the desired pink shade.
- Let the chocolate cool slightly but still pipe-able.
- Pour the pink chocolate into a clean piping bag and cut off the end to create a small opening about 1/16” in diameter.
- Pipe swirls onto the white chocolate cover shortbread cookies.
- Allow to set completely on a baking sheet before serving or packing as gifts.