Treading Lightly
Treading Lightly

Four ingredient shortbread cookies

My friend Lauren and I also made these cookies because they are easy to customize to your taste. I love filling them with jam, but you can also add a simple icing or chocolate drizzle or coat. A real bonus of this recipe is how easy it is. It only takes four ingredients to make the dough, and yet you can create multiple types of cookies with it. During the holidays my mom chops up dried fruit and puts it into half of the dough. She finishes those cookies with a simple icing. You can also make them out of whole wheat flour and they taste just as good.

3/4 pound butter (salted or unsalted) at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour
optional: fruit jam or preserve, chocolate, powdered sugar (depending on how you wish to finish them once they are baked)

Recipe from The Barefoot Contessa, by Ina Garten- “Linzer Cookies”

1. Preheat the oven
2. In an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, mix together butter and sugar
3. Add the vanilla
4. Add flour and salt
5. Mix the dough until it just begins to hold together. Pull it out of the mixer and shape it into a flat disk.
6. Put it in a container (or do whatever you wish to keep it air tight) and chill for at least 30 minutes. (If you do not chill the dough it will be next to impossible to cut it out.)
7. Roll out the dough about 1/4 inch thick and use cookie cutters for desired shapes
8. Place the cookies on the baking sheet into the fridge for at least 15 minutes. This stops the cookies from spreading out as much.
9. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.

Sorry about the really terrible pictures with these. I had smudged the lens and the lightening was weird when we finally finished all of our cookies. We baked for more than 3 hours. I don’t know about Lauren, but I think it was worth it.

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