Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Festive Shortbread Cookies

Yesterday I caught my son leafing through the December issue of Canadian Living Magazine. A page filled with colourful illustrations captured his attention.

"Mommy! I want to make these!" he exclaimed.

The magazine article was titled Kids in the Kitchen, and its cookie recipe was very easy for little guys to follow. We mixed up a double batch of dough and baked our cookies yesterday. This morning the boys and I had a blast decorating our creations with chocolate and candy sprinkles.

These cookies look so pretty. I have hidden them away to ensure they last until Christmas!

3/4 C. all purpose flour
1/4 C. cornstarch
1/2 C. butter, softened
1/4 C. granulated sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla

1/2 C. milk or semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 tsp. vegetable oil
Candy-coated chocolate pieces, coloured sprinkles or stars

1. Get ready
  • Wash hands.
  • Measure out ingredients.
  • Get out equipment.
  • Line 2 rimless baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place oven rack in centre of oven. Heat to 300F (150C).
2. Make dough
  • In mixing bowl, whisk flour with cornstarch.
  • In large mixing bowl and using wooden spoon, beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in vanilla. Stir in flour mixture, half at a time, to make smooth dough with no streaks.
3. Roll into balls
  • On lightly floured work surface and using hands, roll dough into two 9-inch (23cm) logs; cut each log into 9 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball.
  • Place, 2 inches (5cm) apart, on prepared baking sheets.
4. Bake cookies
  • Bake, one sheet at a time, in centre of oven until bottoms are golden brown, 30-35 minutes.
  • Wearing oven mitts, transfer baking sheets to rack. Let cool for 2 minutes. Using metal spatual, transfer cookies to rack and let cool completely.
5. Decorate cookies
  • Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  • Pour enough water into small saucepan to come 1 inch (2.5cm) up side. Heat on stove over medium heat until hot but not boiling. Remove from heat.
  • Place chocolate chips and oil in heatproof bowl. Weating oven mitts, place bowl over hot water; stir until chocolate is melted and smooth. (Be careful not to get any water in chocolate or it will clump.) Move bowl to work surface.
  • Dip cookies, one at a time, halfway into chocolate, shaking gently over bowl to remove excess. Dip into desired decorations. Set on prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm and shiny, about 30 minutes. Makes 18 cookies.

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