Foodie Blogroll

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Ginger Shortbread Cookies

We used to make Christmas cookies every year. Both my sister's and I would sit around the kitchen table. We had all of mom's little Pyrex bowls out, (the same ones we'd use to color Easter eggs in) each with there own color of icing. We'd roll out the dough, use all the Christmas cookie cutters. The star, Santa, Christmas tree, bells. I actually bought a set of these at the thrift store once I moved to Florida. I think it came with the spade,heart, clubs and diamonds too. I also bought a vintage cookie press so I could make our other favorite "spritz" cookie. We used color cookie dough for those. I remember my favorite decoration for that one were those silver balls that looked like BBs. What are they called?

Anyway by myself it's just not the same. So I make a cookie that's boring to make, but tasty! I have been making these for years. Sometimes I just bake up one log and freeze the other one until I am ready to use it. Did I mention we have a small family? We don't eat too many sweets. I found the recipe in my: Bon App├ętit March 1997

yield: 36 cookies

These delicate, buttery cookies are nice with a cup of tea or coffee.

2 1/3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup coarsely chopped crystallized ginger (I used a little more about 1/3 c)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Additional powdered sugar (optional)

Combine flour, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, ground ginger and salt in medium bowl. Combine crystallized ginger and 1 tablespoon sugar on work surface; chop finely.

Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light. Add lemon peel and extracts. Beat in crystallized ginger mixture. Beat dry ingredients into butter mixture in 4 additions.

Transfer dough to floured work surface. Divide dough in half. Roll each half into 6-inch log. Shape each log into 2x1x6-inch-long rectangular log. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 325°F. Lightly butter 2 large baking sheets. Cut each dough log into 1/3-inch-thick cookies. Transfer cookies to prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart (cookies will spread slightly during baking). Bake cookies until edges are pale golden, about 24 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 3 minutes. Using metal spatula, transfer cookies to racks. Sift additional powdered sugar over warm cookies, if desired. Cool completely. (Can be made ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.)