Shortbread Cookies…the Finale

My little brother, who by the way is no longer little and who looks alarmingly like my older brother is a man of few words.  He is not the talkative one of the bunch…I’d probably take that crown, as grandpa always said, my mouth was constantly motoring.  However, when James talks he 1) gets his point across and 2) generally makes me giggle.  Today was no different.

This is the text message conversation we had yesterday.

Randomly one evening ….

James: Shortbread Cookies

Me:  OK…can do.

James:  Can you make them taste like Panera’s?  (this came with a picture of a dog)

Me: I don’t know what those taste like…anything special?

James:  Heaven.

Me:  Lol…I’ll go and buy one and check these suckers out.

James: Good idea

Me: OK

and then we talk a bit about Dad’s birthday…omitting because he reads this and is always looking for clues

James:  When are you coming home?

Me:  Tomorrow

James:  OK

Me:  Do you want cookies dipped in chocolate?

James:  NO

Me:  Do they taste of anything, like lemon or orange or anything?

James: No

Me:  Ok, are they crunchy or soft?

James:  In between.

Me: OK

Me:  Hope mine are good.

James:  Just firm enough that when you hold the edge it doesn’t break.

Me:  OK, good description..

And that was that.  His request therefore made it’s way onto my baking To Do List.  It will be the last cookie that will be baked in my oven for the year 2011.  This cookie signifies the end of my ‘Month of Cookies’.  The flour, sugars, baking soda, salt, etc…have been put back in their respective homes, after sitting on my counter for the month.   I am happy to say that, while I love baking cookies, I will not be baking any more cookies for at least a few weeks…I am officially cookied out.

If you are looking for one last cookie to bake or need something quick and fast with few ingredients, then these are your solution!  You can fancy them up a bit by adding roasted pecans or maybe some lemon zest or dip half of the cookie in melted chocolate.  However, at the speed my brother was eating them….they are delicious just as they are.

I am heading home for the Christmas holiday and the anticipation of Christmas morning is starting to stir.  I have the presents packed, Stanley meowing in his carrying case, and all the cookies packed…in the far far far back of the Jeep….and I am on the road.  It is just a short trip, but a road trip none the less.

If you are travelling or staying put, I wish you a safe and joyful Christmas.

Love,

Mal

Shortberad Cookies

Adapted from Martha

Makes 1 dozen

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Sticks Unsalted Butter – room temperature
  • 1/2 Cup Confectioner’s Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

In a small bowl, whisk together flour and salt.  Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, beat butter for about 3 minutes or until it is light and fluffy.  Add the confectioner’s sugar and vanilla, beat for an additional 2 minutes.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl half way through beating.   Add the flour and salt mixture and beat until the flour is completly incorporated – the dough may be a touch crumbly but will come together when pressed between your fingers.

Empty dough onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a brick.  Wrap in plastic wrap and place in fridge for at least one hour.

Preheat oven to 325°F.

When the hour is up, remove from fridge and on a lightly floured surface roll the dough out into a rectangle measuring 12 inches x 6 inches.  ( the dough should be about 1/4 inch thick).  Using a butter knife, cut the dough into squares (2 in. x 2 in.) and then cut the squares on the diaganol, creating triangles.  Or you can use cookie cutters or make whatever shape you like.  Take a fork and poke a few holes into the tops of the cookies.

Place shapes onto ungreased or parchment lined cookie sheet about 1 inch apart and bake for about 12 to 15 minutes, or until the bottoms begin to turn golden.  Remove from oven and let cool slightly on cookie sheet before transferring to wire rack.

Once cool store in airtight container.

Enjoy!

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