It is that time of the year again. Christmas and New Year is just approximately one and a half months away. Time flies and it flies pretty quickly, doesn't it? If you are making your own edible gifts, you ought to get busy already. Today we will kick off the festive season with an easy bake - Easy Shortbread Cookies. This traditional Scottish cookie is so simple to make yet the taste is utterly delish. I would strongly suggest shortbread cookies if you want an easy to make recipe but at the same time, adding a personal touch to your gift.
Traditionally, this cookie follows the 1 to 2 to 3 ratio, that is, one part of sugar to two parts of butter to three parts of flour. Because of its simplicity, you would get the original taste of its buttery salty sweetness. For a little bit of variation, you could replace 1/5 part of the flour with rice flour or cornstarch to give it a different texture. Besides that, you could also alternate between icing sugar or castor sugar. When you have such basic ingredients, it is essential that you get good quality ingredients so that the flavours come out authentic and strong. Yes, invest in a good (and expensive!) butter and try your best to get your hands on that pure vanilla extract if you could. You wouldn't regret the effort.
This is the basic recipe for shortbread cookies. Not my best work, but I have to concur it tastes bloody good. This easy shortbread cookies that could be transformed into multiple variations. It is akin to a white canvas waiting to be painted with colours and textures. Therefore, I suggest you make a big batch of this cookie to be divided into a few different recipes, saving you tons of work. The best thing is, you could pre-make these various cookie doughs and keep it frozen until the very last minute when you are about to give this away. Bake it then and you would get fresh mouth-watering buttery shortbreads immediately. Very handy if you have guests over. And if you are all too lazy to even warm the oven, just wrap it nicely to be given away as cookie dough present!
Shortbread Cookies 奶英式奶油酥Adapted from Joy of Baking
260 g flour
225 g salted butter, room temperature
60 g castor sugar (original recipe uses icing sugar)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1. Combine flour and salt and mix. Preheat oven to 150C.
2. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and add in sugar. Whisk until butter turns pale and creamy in about two minutes, occasionally scraping down the sides of the bowl.
3. Beat in vanilla extract.
4. Using a spatula, stir in flour until well combined.
5. Pour mixture into a lined baking pan. Level with spatula, score lines for the rectangles and make indents using a fork. Bake at 150C for 20 to 25 minutes or until cookies are slightly browned at the edges.
6. Remove from oven and cut along the lines into rectangles while it is still warm. Serve plain or dipped in chocolate.
Also check out my previous year's Christmas Butter Cookies here: