Shortbread, a classic Scottish dessert, is a sweet biscuit/cookie, named for its crumbly, or “short,” texture due to the high butter content. Rusk, a twice-baked biscuit rolled in sugar and spices, was the medieval predecessor of shortbread. Rusk used yeast instead of butter until butter became wider spread (no pun intended) throughout the British isles. Shortbread, using the expensive ingredients sugar, flour and butter, was typically reserved for special occasions including, but not limited to, weddings, Christmas and Scottish New Year’s Eve (Hogmanay).
SIMPLE SHORTBREAD RECIPE
1 ½ sticks softened butter (or 3/4 cups)
¼ cup sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix softened butter with sugar, and then add flour. Stir until well mixed. If too crumbly, add 1-2 more Tablespoons softened butter.
To make bars: With hands, evenly pat dough into ungreased 8 by 8-inch baking pan.
To make cookies: Roll dough to 1/2–inch thick on lightly floured surface. Cut into small shapes with cookie cutters or by hand. Place ½ inch apart on ungreased baking pan.
Bake bars/cookies for 20 minutes or until edges start to turn golden (not brown). Remove from oven. Cool. Enjoy!
-Add chopped pecans to the dough.
-Dip the cooled cookies/bars in melted chocolate and let set.