Monday, October 31, 2011
More Halloween treats
Crunchy Brown Sugar Shortbread
Cookies 1,001 Mouthwatering Recipes From Around the World
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 ¼ cups firmly packed light brown sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Sift the flour and salt into a medium bowl. Beat the butter, brown sugar and vanilla in a large bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until creamy. Mix in the dry ingredients to form a smooth dough. Press the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Butter two cookie sheets. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of ¼ inch. Use a 2-inch cookie cutter to cut out the cookies. Gather the dough scraps, re-roll, and continue cutting out cookies until all the dough is used. I ended up making balls of dough and squishing them down with cookie stamps. Use a spatula to transfer the cookies to the prepared cookie sheets, placing the 1-inch apart. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until just golden at the edges, rotating the sheets halfway through for even baking. Transfer to racks to cool.
Makes 16-20 cookies.
I received a set of Halloween cookie stamps for my birthday and I made sure to get a batch of stamped cookies made for Halloween. I'm trying hard to use my holiday-themed cooking items - sprinkles, cupcake liners, cookie cutters, etc.
I knew for the stamp to work, I'd have to use a shortbread cookie recipe and I'm really not a big fan of homemade shortbread. I can't pinpoint why that is since I love Lorna Doones and other commercial shortbread cookies but whenever I've made shortbread, I haven't been that impressed. Maybe because it looks like I keep making the same basic recipe (I just noticed that - I knew I made shortbread before but I just verified that it wasn't a recipe from this book - I didn't think to check if the recipe was basically the same). I know there are variations - I think I'd probably prefer one without brown sugar.
Even though I didn't swoon over these, both boys ate a couple of these right away. Go figure - they don't get excited over most of the baked goods I make. I wasn't expecting these to be a hit with them but they were.
I love this cookbook. I have the cake version too. Both have lots of recipes (1,001 they say but I never counted), which is great, but whenever a book boasts a huge amount of recipes, you can't trust that they were all meticulously tested. Also, these books want to show you lots of recipes - not necessarily the best recipes. For those reasons, every recipe is a bit of a crap shoot but I've had more successes than not.