Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas Cookies

I baked a few batches of Christmas cookies yesterday. It was my contribution to the gift baskets my wife was putting together. Nancy does all the real work, including making the baskets look nice. Check out her post:
Gift Mixes for Christmas

The little green and red cookies are a very basic shortbread recipe. I think it is nearly a perfect cookie. The recipe is easy and the cookies are not too sweet and not too gooey with butter or shortening. I like them with coffee or tea.

Here's the recipe from the book Ratio.

Recipe # 31 Basic Shortbread Cookies

4 ½ tablespoons sugar
1 stick of butter
1 heaping cup of flour
½ teaspoon vanilla (or almond)

If you have a scale, and every baker should, the recipe is:

1 part sugar (2 ounces)
2 parts butter (4 ounces)
3 parts flour (6 ounces)

Mix the butter, sugar and vanilla. Add red or green food color. Mix in flour. When a dough forms, roll it into a log, wrap it in plastic, and refrigerate it. When the butter in the dough hardens, slice cookies and bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.

For an easy variation, try my Three-Four-Five Cookies. For Christmas I sprinkled red or green sugar on the cookies before baking.

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