Tag: Shortbread

Baking Chronicle No. 21: Chocolate Chip Shortbread!

Baking Chronicle No. 21: Chocolate Chip Shortbread!

Why snack on popcorn when you can bake yourself cookies? Neither Sophronia nor I could think of a good answer to that question, and so we decided to bake chocolate chip shortbread to eat during our Kim Possible Marathon!

Our (fantastic, life-changing) shortbread came courtesy of the King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion, also known as my family’s go-to cookie-and-brownie cookbook. The recipe was simple, and there were only 6 ingredients: butter, sugar, salt, vanilla, flour, and chocolate chips! Basically, you creamed together the butter and sugar, then dumped in all of the other ingredients, and voila! Shortbread dough!

For the first batch (that we made for our first marathon), we used the full amount of flour and pressed the cookies into 9-inch cake pans, as instructed. However, for our second batch, we omitted 1/4 cup of flour (the first batch was a little dry) and pressed the dough onto a greased cookie sheet in a haphazard pattern (I really didn’t feel like making a neat square). Then we just baked the cookies for a little over half an hour, and they were done! Instant snack!

The cookies were amazing. I mean, I have hated shortbread for my entire life, mainly because I’ve only ever had store-bought shortbread, but this shortbread….It was crunchy yet melt-in-the-mouth, flecked with chocolate, and beautifully buttery. In short, I loved it! I will definitely make this recipe again!

(P. S. There’s a reason there aren’t that many pictures for this bake – the shortbread disappeared that fast!)

Adventures in Baking No. 6: Rose Shortbread

Adventures in Baking No. 6: Rose Shortbread

Ever since I started watching The Great British Baking Show, I’ve wanted to try rose water. I was just ravenously curious as to what rose even tasted like. I mean, I’ve never had it (before yesterday), so after considering for a month I bought myself a small bottle of rose water from Sur La Table.

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My rose water

My next challenge was what I should use as a carrier for the flavor. I decided on shortbread because…I felt like making shortbread!

A quick aside for shortbread haters: I, too, once hated shortbread. In fact, I still do hate shortbread  – store-bought shortbread. Homemade shortbread is one of most buttery and delicious cookies ever, but store-bought shortbread is disgusting. Summary: make your own shortbread and try it!

So I made my basic shortbread recipe, melting the butter instead of creaming it because I didn’t think my mixer could take the chunky butter, regardless of how soft it was. The shortbread was easy to make – I just added all the ingredients and then mixed in 1/4 teaspoon of rose water before freezing the dough for an hour.

Next, I rolled out the dough, which was interesting. My dough kept sticking to my rolling pin (despite flouring everything), so I eventually got so frustrated that I just used my palm to press out the dough. Uneven thicknesses? Check. Faster? Totally.

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I flattened these cookies with my palm rather than rolling them out

Then I just chucked the shortbread in the oven to bake. I had a bit of an issue with the bottom rack in that the bottoms wouldn’t really cook, but I fixed it with perseverance and perhaps 7 2-minute trips to the oven.

When I tried a piece of shortbread, I tasted shortbread. Seriously. It just tasted like good shortbread. I tasted no rose water, just butter. It was delicious, but no rose. The people who taste-tested the shortbread, on the other hand, could definitely taste the rose. One hated the rose in the cookie. Another said the rose added a bitter taste.

Honestly, I couldn’t taste anything bitter or rosy. Just shortbread.

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The baked shortbread (this is the batch that I rolled out and cut with a biscuit cutter)

But, to make the cookies taste better, I melted some good tempering chocolate (Trader Joe’s Pound Plus all the way!) and spooned it onto the tops of the cookies. Again, I thought it tasted good, because it tasted like shortbread with chocolate, and who doesn’t like butter and chocolate? (Answer: No one!)

However, I probably won’t use rose water again, because while I couldn’t taste it, I could smell it, and it gave me an awful headache for the next three hours.

Next time I make shortbread, I’ll add something innocuous, like lemon or allspice 😀