Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Christmas Cookie Week: Shortbread

Today is Day 2 of Christmas Cookie Week and I baked our favourite family shortbread recipe.  This is a recipe that my Grandmother used as far back as my Father can remember so it may have even been passed down to my Grandmother from her Mother.  I like to think so as I love things that have a connection to history like that.

The recipe is simple - only 4 ingredients - and seems like something the pioneers would have made.  It takes far longer to knead all the ingredients into a ball than it does to add everything into the bowl.

1 lb butter (2 cups) at room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
5 cups flour
pinch salt

1.  Mix all ingredients together in a bowl
2.  Knead until they form a ball
3.  Roll out on a lightly-floured surface to a thickness of between 1/4 and 1/2 inch
4.  Cut or stamp cookies with cookie cutters and place on an ungreased cookie sheet
5.  Bake at 350F for about 8-10 minutes or until they are lightly brown (do not overbake)

Traditionally we use our cookie cutters and then we decorate the cookies with sprinkles.  Kate  loves to do this (you can see the fun she and a friend had last year in this post) and will hopefully make us another batch when she gets back from university in December.

I tried something different this year.  After I rolled out the dough I used a side plate as my template and I cut around the circle.  Then I used a fork to crimp the edges and I then cut the circle into eight pieces.  I put a few sprinkles on each section before baking them.  It was a fun simple variation on our usual way of decorating the shortbread cookies, but between you and me I'll always prefer Kate's masterpieces.

Thanks for stopping by for Day 2 of Christmas Cookie Week.  For more baking inspiration pop on over to Angie's blog and see what she has cooking.  Also come on back this afternoon to check out how I packaged the shortbread cookies to give them away as Christmas treats.

Linked to Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style,
Tasty Tuesday at Nap Time Creations,
Handmade Holiday at Just a Girl,
Recipe Link Party at Remodelaholic,
Cookiepalooza Party at Centsational Girl


  1. This is very much like the recipe I use, you're right. I have done it with brown sugar instead of white sugar too and love the results. Certainly there is history in this recipe Grace since I inherited this recipe from my grandmother.

  2. Yum, my favorite! I love the little wedges, what a great idea!

  3. These are the cutest ones in that shape. I'm sure they taste as good as they look. This is the kind of simple cookie my son likes.

  4. Those do look gorgeous, mine always collapse slightly on cooking...

  5. I like the simple shapes.
    Please come share this at:

  6. Grace, I LOVE the way you cut them. I am going to make mine this way this year!!! I'm your newest follower. Going now to check on Day 1. Looking forward to the rest of the week!