Shortbread is the ultimate indulgence. With an ingredient list traditionally comprised of one part white sugar, two parts butter, and three parts flour, these Scottish “biscuits,” popular since the 16th century, have surely stood the test of time. On my last trip to the U.K., I took home a box of shortbread from Harrod’s famous upscale “food court” and savored every last bite while back home in New York. I made a double batch to bring home for Christmas since both my Dad and my fiancé love shortbread as well ~ a win-win situation for all! This recipe calls for you to double bake the shortbread and from my experience is the best method to cook this delightful buttery treat. Because there is only a short list of ingredients, the quality of each is very important. In light of that, I decided to use European-style butter to elevate the richness of the shortbread and provide the most flavor possible. If you can’t find European-style butter at your grocery store or market, you can certainly still use regular butter for this recipe. After baking the shortbread twice (first in a pan and then cut into fingers on a baking sheet), it came out rich, crumbly and the most beautiful golden butter color. I hope you enjoy this little taste of Scotland in your kitchen for the holidays this year!
Twice Baked Shortbread
Recipe Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted European-style butter, melted and still warm (if you can’t find European-style, regular is fine!)
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Granulated or sanding sugar for sprinkling
14″ fluted tart pan or 9 1/2″ round pan with removable bottom
Grease bottom and sides of pan.
Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat.