Thursday, December 22, 2011

Peppermint Candy Shortbread

 The recipe for these shortbread cookies is found in a book published by Oxmoor House called “Christmas Cookies”.

These are nice little cookies.  I’ve actually made a better tasting shortbread (now, if I can only remember where that recipe is…) but there is certainly nothing bad about this recipe.

I love shortbread because it's not overly sweet and rich.  Such a simple recipe for being so versatile.  The vanilla bark and peppermint add just the right amount of sweetness to the shortbread.

Ingredients are so simple; just butter, sugar and flour.

It’s easy to roll out.  For this particular recipe it instructed to roll out to a 6” circle.  I rolled out my dough into a rough circle and then used a 6” round corning ware dish to cut around so my circle would be nice and neat.  I’m anal that way.

Score with a knife and bake.

When a batch comes out of the oven, I like to go over the score lines again before it cools.

When transferring to a cooling rack to separate it into wedges, handle the shortbread very carefully.

My vanilla bark wasn't very deep for dipping the rounded ends in.  Instead of dipping the end of the cookies in the vanilla bark, I found it easier to use a little spreader.

Peppermint Candy Shortbread
Yield:  2 dozen

1 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
4 (2 ounce) vanilla bark coating squares
2/3 cup crushed hard peppermint candy

Mise en Place:
·         set out butter to soften
·         measure out sugar and flour
·         crush peppermint candies with a rubber mallet in a baggie and pour into small bowl
·                 prepare your double boiler

Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well.  Add flour, beating just until blended.

Divide dough into 3 equal portions.  Place 1 portion of dough on an ungreased baking sheet; roll into a 6-inch circle.  Score dough into 8 triangles.  Repeat procedure with remaining 2 portions of dough.

Bake at 325° for 25 minutes or until barely golden.  Let cool on baking sheets 5 minutes.  Remove to wire racks to cool completely.  Working very carefully, separate discs into wedges.  (Shortbread is very fragile.  Be gentle with it so tips remain intact.).

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