Thursday, October 15, 2009


good ol' shortbreads

i like to call 'em "SHORTIES"

my go-to cookie. there's a certain cookie monster in this house that insists there be shortbreads all the time. some of my more experimental cookies don't quite hit the mark, but it seems most flavor combos are just fine when enveloped by shortbread cookie dough.

they are also the "gift-of-choice" cookie. as you can see they stack up nicely, making them very easy to package in those cute little twist tie gift bags or square goodie box. shelf-life?...they don't last around here long, but when i throw a little cayenne into the mix they don't get devoured as quickly (i'm the only one in the house that can stand the heat) and i'e tried one probably a week old and it was just as good. i make sure they're in an airtight container and i always put a papertowel at the bottom of the tupperware.
i think i've posted the base recipe a few times. it all started with a cookie from smitten kitchen that she got from dorie you know it's a good one, tried and true.
as i've stated before, i prefere the powdered sugar vs. granulated in my shortbreads...don't really know why, but they always come out perfect and they keep their shape really well.
one of my tricks that i think helps with the sharp edges is i pump the oven up to about 370 degrees for the first 4 mins then turn it down to 325 untill they're just turning golden around the edges..i find when using cocoa powder they really hold up and don't spread a bit, but if not, sometmes i'll just be a bit generous when measuring the flour. oh yeah...and make sure your cookies are cold right before putting them in the oven to further prevent spreading.
another great thing about this recipe is the ziplock baggie trick. makes things soooo easy for square or rectangular shapes. if using a cookie cutter, cut your first batch, then don't be afraid to throw your remainder into another baggie and repeat the process.
try any combo you seem to feel is right of just the flavors you have on hand. this base recipe shouldn't let you down.
PS...when i say base recipe, of course i mean just the ingredients - butter, flour, powdered sugar and vanilla extract...then add what ever you want. i've done lemon lavender, white chocolate cardamon, chocolate cayenne, craisin walnut and so on...too many to name.
hope you enjoy...let me know about some flavor combos you come up with...

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