Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Shortbread

I have been overwhelmed in the past week or so to the response to my Reese’s Peanut Butter Bars. God bless Pinterest. As a thank you to everyone who’s expressed their delight at the peanut butter/chocolatey goodness of those treats, I bring you another equally decadent dessert.  These buttery, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread cookies are infused with rich peanut butter and a smattering of sweet chocolate chips. Oh baby.

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Shortbread Tarts

These delectable morsels are perfect for just about any occasion. Elegant enough for a bridal or baby shower and bite sized for an appetizer heavy party. You can make large quantities of them easily and highlight any of the best fruits of whatever season you’re in. I went with raspberries because I don’t think there’s anything that pairs quite as nicely with a bright tart lemon creme than a fresh sweet raspberry. The buttery rich shortbread crust makes the silky lemon creme filling sing! They are beautiful on a platter and delightful to eat as well. [Read more…]

Shortbread Three Ways

I love versatile recipes. This one I got from my cousin’s blog – care of the Barefoot Contessa. Today, I made it into three different cookies. Part of it I turned into Emilys. Others into Raspberry Linzers and then just cut out some pretty leaf shapes and did a little chocolate and roasted peanut action on top of the rest.

Emilys, Linzers, Shortbread

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Raspberry Linzers

I made these out of shortbread cookies. A little orange zest added to the dough would make them truly outstanding!

Linzer Cookies

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Emilys

Yesterday I made an amazing discovery. I love people and I love food. Well, I already knew those things, but here’s the discovery. I bake because I enjoy it, but more because I love the people in my life and want them to have delicious things. I’ve made a decision. Someday, when I have my own bakery, all the goodies will be named for the people I love that had a hand in the creation of those things. So, instead of having a cookie called “Double Chocolate Brownie Cookies”, they will simply be named “Phil”. As in, I’d like a dozen “Phils”. Because I created that cookie specifically for my pastor. And each item will have a photo of that person next to the name. I’m thinking of calling my bakery “Bakerlady’s House” – because it will be filled with all the people I love…in the form of delicious treats. We’ll see, I’m still working on it.

Today, I created what will be known as Emily. Emily (the person) is a friend from church. She is generous and organized. I love that she always seems to know when I need a play date to walk with our strollers and just talk. I made these cookies today to recreate some that I purchased (gasp!) for her baby shower last week. I have an excuse, I could not use my kitchen that day. Here’s what the purchased (Trader Joe’s) cookies looked like: [Read more…]

Rosmerta’s Butterbeer

Yes, it’s true. I love Harry Potter. The movies are entertaining, but I really love the books. I re-read them about once a year. Yes, the whole series. While trying to figure out my tickets for the upcoming (November 18th!) premiere of the first installment of the final book-turned-movie, I stumbled upon a fan website that had this recipe listed. When I read the description like “a whipped shortbread cookie”. I was sold. I figured I’d give it a whirl now so I can make a batch for drinking in line (we stake out a few hours before the show) at the midnight showing in a few weeks. For those of you who are not Harry Potter fans, butterbeer is what the kids (Harry and his school chums) drink at Madam Rosmerta’s establishment “The Three Broomsticks” in Hogsmeade (a little village just off the school grounds).  According to J.K.Rowling herself, the flavor of butterbeer is “a little bit like less-sickly butterscotch”, and can be served hot in foaming tankards or nice and cold in a bottle. This is the cold in a bottle version, but if you wanted a hot mug – I’d imagine you could just add about 8oz of boiling water to the butter/sugar mixture. [Read more…]

Melt-In-Your-Mouth Shortbread

My favorite thing about these quick little shortbread bites is that they really do simply melt in your mouth. My second favorite thing is that there’s only 4 ingredients – all of which you probably have in your cupboard already.

Shortbread topped with Fudge Frosting

Melt In Your Mouth Shortbread

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. Whip butter and sugar together with an electric mixer until fluffy. Stir in cornstarch, and flour. Beat on low for one minute, then on medium for 2 minutes. I use a melon baller to make uniform cookie rounds and flatten them slightly with an offset spatula dipped in granulated sugar. Or you can drop cookies by spoonfuls 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
  3. Bake for 12 minutes in the preheated oven. Watch that the edges don’t brown too much. Cool on wire racks.

I have served these plain, drizzled with chocolate and (like today) topped with Fudge Frosting.

Lemon Bars

The key to great lemon bars is to use lots of fresh lemon zest and juice. The bright tart lemon is a perfect complement to the rich buttery crust. This recipe will fit into a 9×13 casserole dish just fine, but you’ll end up with a thinner bar. I like my lemon bars to have nice thick layers of shortbread crust and lemon curd, so I use a smaller dish to bake them in.

Lemon Bars

Lemon Bars
Crust
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt
Filling
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups white sugar
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 lemons, juiced (about 2/3 C)
Zest of 3 lemons
1 T butter

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F (175°C).
  2. In a medium bowl, blend together softened butter, 2 cups flour and 1/2 cup sugar until it forms dough that holds its shape when pressed together. Press into the bottom of a greased 8×11  inch pan.
  3. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until firm and golden. It’s better to overbake, than underbake the crust – so make sure it’s begun to turn a golden color before removing it from the oven.
  4. While crust is baking, whisk together 1 1/2 cups sugar and the eggs in a medium saucepan. Add the lemon juice, zest, butter and 5 T flour. Whisk together constantly over medium low heat until slightly thickened and warm. Carefully pour over the baked crust.
  5. Bake for an additional 20-25 minutes in the preheated oven. Remove when the edges are set, but the center still moves slightly when jiggled. The bars will firm up as they cool.
  6. Allow to cool completely in pan. (about 2 hours) Dust with powdered sugar and cut into squares.
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