Saturday, December 4, 2010

Shortbread Cookies or Bring on the Butter (Part 1)

Confession.  I don't think I've ever baked shortbread on my own before.  The recipe is crazy easy.  The result is a rich, buttery cookie that makes me think of Christmas.  I used a recipe found on the side of the cornstarch box. 

I'm going to look around for another recipe, or tweak this one.  While we found the cookies good, both of my kids thought it could use a little something.  The Princess said cinnamon, the Padawan said vanilla.  So there will be a Part deux to this post in the next couple of weeks)

Here we gooooo!

Here's what you'll need:  (From the Canada Cornstarch box)

1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup butter, softened

I started by blending the dry ingredients together, and then sifting them twice.

I also cubed the butter while it was cold, let it warm and soften, then added that to the bowl.

I turned the mixer on and let it do its thing; I scraped down the sides a few times also.

The dough was very easy to manipulate, I chose to roll it into balls rather than roll out the dough and cut with cookie cutters or shape into crescents.

I did want them to have some texture though, and thought about using a fork, but I decided to use the wire mesh strainer instead.  Next time, I'll press a little harder to give it more definition.  I did like they way they looked.  A few days later I was at a gourmet shop/cooking school and noticed they has a whole display of cookie "pressers" with various Christmas designs.  They were cute, but a tad overpriced.

My kids love jimmies, sprinkles, coloured sugars oh, just about anything you can top a baked good with.  They insisted the cookies would be horrible without some toppings.  Here's what we had:

Clockwise from top center:  red & white sanding sugar, gingerbread men sprinkles, red & green jimmies, snowflake sprinkles, red maraschino cherries, green maraschino cherries, Hershey's Kisses & in the middle:  praline pecans.

I topped the cookies before baking.  Hey wait a minute - where are the Hershey's Kisses?  Oh, right I had peeled a few, but they fell.  Into my mouth.  So I peeled a few more, and they fell.  Into kids' mouths.  Then I decided to bake the cookies, peel a few more Kisses, and top the cookies when they came out of the oven.

When they came out the oven I let them cool a bit before transferring them to a cooling rack.  And one of the Hershey's Kisses shortbread fell.  No really, it fell onto the counter and broke; I had to eat it then and there.  

I will bake these again, but I think I will add a smidge of vanilla bean paste to the dough.  I'll let you know how they turn out.  Now I have to find the half eaten bag of Kisses.  I need to make sure they're still fresh.

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm... yummy! Mine are all gone already :-(
    A tiny bit of almond extract is nice in shortbread too, or grate a little hazelnut into the mix.