During the holidays, one of the easiest things to make – and also one of the treats everyone likes most (a good combination!) is rosemary shortbread. There’s only one caveat and that is to prick the shortbread when it goes in the oven – and again when it comes out – and especially to cut it into squares before it cools. Otherwise, it’s almost impossible to cut later when it has cooled.
Here’s my recipe derived mostly from Melissa Clark:
- Cut two sticks of unsalted butter into 1 inch pieces when it’s cold – place the pieces into a food processor bowl.
- Add 2 cups of flour (I aerate the flour before dipping it into a measure so as not to compact and add too much flour.) The proportion of butter to flour is delicate and accounts for the tender bite of these cookies.
- Add 2/3 cup of turbinado sugar
- Add a large pinch of salt (I use Maldon sea salt)
- Add a teaspoon or two of very good honey. I was given s jar of local Carlisle honey and I drizzle that into the food processor bowl.
Process using short spurts until the dough is almost together – do not overprocess it.
I use a 9 inch pie pan and spray it with Pam beforehand. Then, I put the dough into the pan and press it down with a large spoon. Prick it in intervals with a fork. If it doesn’t hold together to do that, then wait until it is baked and do it then.
Bake in preheated 325-degree oven for 50 minutes or until golden brown. I turn it partway through so that the edges brown evenly. Take the shortbread out, prick with a fork and when slightly cooled, cut into serving pieces with a sharp knife.
It freezes beautifully, and it’s so handy to have some around when drinking Constant Comment or Lapsang Souchang tea in the afternoons.
Enjoy! And happy holidays too!