short. and sweet. and easy. and…

December 23rd, 2012


Okay, so you need one more quick and easy holiday cookie? Really? The bars weren’t enough?

I hear you.

And I bring you shortbread.

In baking terms,”short” refers to a cookie that has a high proportion of fat to flour. From The Kitchn:

“Usually these short doughs are very rich, crumbly, and tender with butter. They tend to be crisp instead of chewy, and slightly sandy. Shortbread is the quintessential “short” dough”.

This cookie has it all. It’s a snap to pull together, with minimal ingredients.  It’s a dream to roll out and cut into shapes, making it a great cookie to bake with your kids (can you say “11 days off”?). And it is infinitely adaptable – from sweet to spicy, chocolaty and even savory, there is something for everyone.

Even easier? Shape the dough into a log, for the ultimate slice-and-bake. The unbaked dough freezes beautifully, so in one afternoon you can crank out several different “logs”, wrapped up and ready to go at a moment’s notice (once sliced, the unbaked cookies can go directly into the oven).


My favorite variety incorporates toasted coconut and lots of lime zest. The citrusy zest perfectly offsets all that buttery richness, and the little flecks are so pretty.

Does it get any better than this? I didn’t think so….


And on that note, I wanted to say “good bye” for a few days. I’m taking some time to really unwind, clear my head and be with my family – without any pressure to write, bake, shop or edit photos. Don’t worry though – I’ll be back next weekend with two recipes – one naughty, one nice – to serve all of your end-of-the-year celebration needs (and am I ever NOT on Instagram?).

Have a warm, loving, happy and peaceful holiday – and thank you for all of the support and encouragement you’ve shown me this past year. It’s been one of the best gifts ever.


Toasted Coconut and Lime Shortbread
from The New York Times

1/2 c. shredded unsweetened coconut, baked in a 325 degree oven till golden, about 5 minutes
1/2 lb. unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 c. (150 g.) sugar
2 T. lime zest
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 c. ( 7 1/2 oz.) flour
1/2 c. (2 1/2 oz. ) cornstarch
1/2 t. salt

Cream the butter and sugar in your mixer at low speed for about 30 seconds. With the mixer running beat in the lime zest and egg yolk, followed by the flour, cornstarch, toasted coconut and salt. Beat just until the mixture holds together.

Shape the dough into a log and refrigerate or freeze until firm, at least 30 minutes.

Pre-heat the oven to 275. Slice 1/4-inch cookies and place on baking sheets. Bake until cookies are barely firm, but still very tender, about 30 minutes – do not brown. Cool for a minute on the sheets before transferring cookies to a rack to cool completely.

(print this recipe)

This delicious recipe brought to you by Donuts, Dresses and Dirt

for variations, click here.


13 Responses to “short. and sweet. and easy. and…”

Leave a Reply