Shortbread Recipe

The classic proportions for shortbread are 1, 2, 3: one part sugar, two parts butter and three parts flour. These days shortbread recipes are both sweeter and richer than that. Surprised? The below recipe, inspired by Cook’s Illustrated, boosts the sugar content by about 50% and the butter by about 25%, which is OK by me. The formula is:

8.75 ounces (1 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour
1.25 ounces (1/4 cup) of either corn starch or rice flour
5 ounces (about 2/3 cup) extra fine sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes

Preheat your oven to 425. Combine the flour(s), sugar and salt in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Stir on low to blend. Turn the mixer up to medium speed and add the cold butter. Beat 2-3 minutes until the butter is fully incorporated and a dough comes together. It will range in texture from crumbly to smooth depending on your flour and the ambient temperature.

Shape into classic “petticoat tails” by lining a 9″ cake layer pan with a round of parchment or waxed paper, laying in the dough, covering it with another round of waxed paper, and pressing down on it with a second layer pan. Refrigerated the dough 30 minutes to firm it. Loosen the edges of the dough with a short knife, peel off the top layer of waxed paper, and turn the round out onto a parchment-lined sheet pan. Peel off the second piece of waxed paper.

Put the round into the oven and immediately turn the heat down to 300. Bake 20 minutes, then remove the round from the oven. Insert a 2″ round cutter in the very center of the round (this will be removed later). Score the shortbread with a sharp knife, like spokes on a wheel, into 16 pieces. Use a cake tester or wooden skewer to poke regular holes in the shortbread (the holes are part decorative, part functional, as they allow gas and steam to escape, keeping the shortbread dense).

Return the shortbread to the oven and bake an additional 40 minutes until only very lightly browned. Remove from the oven and sprinkle on additional sugar. Cool 10 minutes then remove the round cutter (saving the cookie at the center for yourself) and slice the shortbread along the scores into blunt pie-shaped pieces. Cool completely, a minimum of 3 hours.

This entry was posted in Desserts & Cookies, Shortbread. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Shortbread Recipe

  1. Grace says:

    Hi, I am loving your shortbread recipe, and several others on the site, but can you tell me how to print them, as I am having difficulty with the ends of the sentences being cut off. I did not notice it at first, until I went to make the short bread and had to come back into the site to read it all again and fill in the blanks, which I did with the others too. Is it me or can you fix this? I could not find a print recipe button on you recipes. Thanks.

    • joepastry says:

      Hi Grace!

      So glad the recipes are working for you! I regret that I don’t have a specific print feature. Something to put on my wish list when I can engage my developer (and pay him). My suggestion is to simply cut, paste and format as you’d like. I have no problem with readers (or anyone else) copying, manipulating and printing content, so by all means feel free…and I’ll try to get that oversight fixed!

      Cheers,

      - Joe

      • Grace says:

        Thanks Joe, I appreciate your quick response. I did cut and paste for 3 recipes and it worked just fine. I will be making the Shortbread again for my Christmas gift boxes, and also the Biscotti with the whole almonds – sounds delish. Then I am going to try my hand with the Popovers, which I loved as a kid when Mum made them but I never have, always seemed so complicated…you just simplified it enough for me to want to try it, wish me luck! You have a wonderful website here and I will be coming back for second and third helpings, so don’t go away! Ciao, G.

        • joepastry says:

          I won’t, Grace — though sometimes I travel on business! I always come back sooner or later!

          - Joe

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>