Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy Shortbread Day

According to, today is National Shortbread Day, in honor of which I'd like to share with you my favorite shortbread recipe. Thanks to the Tetley Tea Twitter feed for the heads-up. Enjoy; it's delicious!

Cranberry Shortbread
Victoria Magazine, 12/01

2 sticks (1 c.) softened unsalted butter
½ c. superfine sugar
2 c. all-purpose flour
¼ c. cornstarch
¼ tsp. salt
2/3 c. coarsely chopped dried cranberries
¼ c. minced crystallized ginger

1. Line one large or two small baking sheets (to accommodate three 6-inch rounds) with parchment paper.
2. In a bowl with an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients slowly, and the cranberries and ginger, mixing just until crumbly. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface. Gently knead until it just comes together. Divide dough into three balls and transfer to baking sheets, pressing each into a round about 6 inches in diameter. With a large, sharp knife, cut each round into eight wedges. Do not pull sections apart. With a small knife, score the edges of each round to create a scalloped edge. With the tines of a fork, decoratively score the top of the dough. Chill for at least 15 minutes.
3. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
4. Bake the shortbread for 25 to 30 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Let cool for 15 minutes and transfer to racks to cool completely. Shortbread can be cut into wedges while warm or kept in rounds to be cut at serving time. Makes 24 cookies.

In case you're wondering, the picture behind the ingredients is from a drawing I did of Mary, Queen of Scots' garden at Stirling Castle. Shortbread is a traditional Scottish treat, and it goes wonderfully with tea. Here's the original ink drawing.

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