Are you a holiday baker? I was more of one when my kids were young and liked to decorate—and devour—cookies. But there's one family favorite that I always make for the holidays—shortbread from my husband's grandmother's (most likely great grandmother's) recipe. My husband's Aunt Jean gave it to me. As a treat, I'm sharing it with you.
Agnes Gordon's Scotch Shortbread
1 lb. softened butter (the salted regular butter)
1 cup white sugar
Approximately 4 cups of all-purpose (plain) white flour. (Be sure to spoon the flour into the measuring cup because you might have to add a few more spoonfuls while you are missing the batter to get the right consistency.)
Mix the softened butter and sugar together with a spoon, and then add the flour one cup at a time and mix the batter with your hands until it feels ready to spread on a cookie sheet. Press the batter on the cookie sheet pan with your hands until it spreads out evenly and smoothly. (It is not necessary to use a rolling pin unless you so desire.)
Then mark the size pieces (leave the pieces on the cookie sheet!) you want with a table knife and prick each piece a couple of times with a table fork. (This lets the air circulate through each piece while the shortbread is baking.) Depending on how you make the pieces you can have 48 or more pieces on a cookie sheet.
BAKE FOR TWO HOURS (2 HOURS) IN A SLOW OVEN (224 TO 235 DEGREES DEPENDING ON YOUR OVEN). Once the shortbread looks a nice golden brown and smells heavenly, remove from the oven and let the shortbread cool on the cookie sheet for 15 minutes. Then use a table knife to cut each piece on the already marked lines but let the shortbread finish cooling on the cookie sheet.
I’m sure Aunt Jean added the following to the recipe: Once the shortbread is cooled, then you can put the cookie pieces in a zip-lock bag, a tight container, or even in the freezer. These shortbread cookies keep for a long time if sealed well and even longer if frozen. They're delicious with a hot cup of coffee or tea. Enjoy this Scottish treat for holidays or anytime. Cheers!
Do you have a favorite Christmas cookie? Connor Donnelly in Holiday Homecoming does. It's snickerdoodles. Not any snickerdoodles. Snickerdoodles made by his high school and college love Natalie Delacroix's mother. Natalie Delacroix, the woman who turned down his marriage proposal on Christmas Eve their senior year of college for a news job in Chicago. Now, Natalie is back in Paradox Lake, NY, and Connor isn't as indifferent to her as he thought he was.
The Donnelly Brothers: Hometown boys make good . . . and find love
For Amazon bestselling sweet and inspirational author Jean C. Gordon, writing is a natural extension of her love of reading. From that day in first grade when she realized t-h-e was the word the, she’s been reading everything she can put h hands on. Jean and her college-sweetheart husband share a 175-year-old farmhouse in Upstate New York—where she sets her books—with their daughter and her family. Their son lives nearby. Connect with Jean on Facebook, as @JeanCGordon on Twitter, or on JeanCGordon.com.