Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Shortbread the way Mother-in-law used to (still does) make it

This has been one of those weeks that really seems to be testing the patience I have worked so very hard to conjure up. A two day headache that just won't vacate, a child that is way too young for independence but feels that he should battle my every safety precaution, wardrobe choice, dinner creation, and my increasingly relaxed time schedule (and also acquire a cold while a new tooth is thrusting to the surface). My tolerance for unnecessary (to me) questions is at an all time low - which poses a challenge at work when you are plunked in the chair of query answering and problem sleuthing. Sleep is at a minimum and my bed seems so lonely with the husband away for work. But my problems are trivial. I realize this. My problems can be remedied with usually the simplest of things. And generally the most delicious of things. When I am feeling like an exhausted shlump of a lady I feel I deserve a treat. A nice rich dark Hot Chocolate and a home made cookie of choice. I usually prefer these cookies to be whipped up by hands other than my own but when the moment of desperation arises - I thrust myself at the challenge.  

*This is the third time I have made these cookies after two failed measurement conversion attempts (not all attempts were made tonight - that would send me to the mad house)

Edinburgh Shortbread - brought to you by my Mother-in-law Marion Scott. 

Pour 1/2 a cup of caster sugar on your counter top and work in 1 cup of butter with your hands. From a mound of three cups of flour (you have dumped this on your counter as well) knead in handfuls at a time until all the flour is gone and you are left with a smooth log of dough. 

This might take a while and it might seem like you have way too much flour - but you don't. The heat from your hands will continue to melt the butter and soften the mixture. Once in a log shape slice up some cookies. (I did place the log in the fridge for 5 minutes or so to firm up the butter a bit to help in the cutting - not in Marion's recipe - I do apologize for altering your generously tested technique).

Note: this photo is from a faulty batch - way too smooth - could be because it's almost a whole log of butter

Lay those cookies down on a tray and poke with a fork. Cook for 20 minutes at 160c. Give a sprinkle with sugar when removed form the oven and still hot. 

Note: this is the result you are looking me

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