Sunday, December 19, 2010

Shortbread Cookies & a reason to celebrate

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The Christmas celebration mood is on and I am just enjoying it to the core. I have been getting a lot of baked goodies from friends and craving for more and more :) That too after the Mega Chennai Bloggers meet, I have got a lot of energy to bake and celebrate :)

I also have one more reason to celebrate the day. :) My blog, Fourth Sense Cooking has crossed 100000 hits :)

I would take this occasion to send a lakh thanks to all the visitors of my blog, if not for you all I would have never tried to cook or blog :P I swear! The encouragement in the form of comments, hits, mails and calls make me so cheerful about the whole thing and I enjoy presenting it for you all :) Keep lending me your support and wishes always :)

So here is my second post of Christmas treats - The simple and ever versatile shortbread cookies :)

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Ingredients:

All purpose flour(Maida) - 1 1/2 cups
Corn flour - 1/2 cup
Butter - 1 cup (Room temperature)
Powdered sugar - 1/2 cup
Salt - a pinch
Vanilla essence / Almond essence - 1 tsp

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Method:

Sieve the dry ingredients(All purpose flour, corn flour and salt) and keep it aside.

In a bowl of your electric mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy for about a minute. Add the sugar to it and beat until smooth and creamy. Pour the vanilla extract and beat just once. Gently stir in the flour mixture just until incorporated. Now flatten the dough into a smooth disk shape with your hand and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill the dough for at least an hour.

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Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Sprinkle some All purpose flour on your working surface and roll out the dough into a 1/4 inch thick rectangle.


Use your cookie cutters to cut out shapes.

Place the cut out cookies on a baking tray and bake for 12-15 minutes, watching closely so that they don’t get too brown. 13 minutes did it perfectly in my convection oven.

Let the cookies cool on wire rack for a while. Initially the cookies might feel a little soft and crumbly to touch but it will harden as it cools down.


Store in air tight containers.

Light, crumbly and melt in the mouth short bread cookies is ready to eat :)

Enjoy making and happy eating :)

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For the Tree:

Since I don't have various sizes of star cutters, I cut out different sizes of stars on a paper and placed it over the rolled dough and cut along the outline with a knife.

Mix one tsp of icing sugar with just few drops of water to make it into a paste.

Once you get around 10 gradually increasing sizes of star cookies, just apply a few drops of the sugar paste on the largest star cookie and stick the subsequent sized cookie on top of it. Go on doing the same until you complete stacking the tree :)

Decorate the tree as you like. I applied a drop of the sugar paste on the ends of the cookies and stuck sliver sugar balls :)

You can even simply sprinkle some sugar powder to give it a snowy look :)

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For Almond finger cookies:

Replace the vanilla essence with a tsp of almond essence and follow the same recipe as above.

Roll out a large 1/4 inch circle and sprinkle some ground almond powder on it and just press lightly to fix it with the dough.

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Press 1/2 inch lines with a scale or knife to make groves and do the same on the other direction with the measurement of 2 inches to make finger sized cookies.

Bake, allow it to cool and then break them out to separate the cookies.

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Tips:

Add cocoa to the same to make chocolate short bread cookies.

You can use instant coffee powder too for flavoring.

You can dip the cookies in melted chocolate.

You can also add few tsps of orange juice or lemon zest to make different flavors. :)

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Written by: Nithya
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46 comments:

Sharmilee! :) said...

You always wonder me with ur clicks and ideas.....No shortbread cookies can be so creative than this....The shortbread cookie tree idea is awesome.And the strain u've taken to cut each star with paper drawn OMG....nenachale enaku porumai poguthu. Way to go Nithi!! Wishing you many more hits in the future too...

Anuradha said...

Merry Christmas Nithi! Cookies are amazing... Innovative a clicks are exciting. There are no words in the dictionary to describe this. Lovely lovely!

Anuradha said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Srivalli said...

Girl you always rock!..that is simply awesome tree..Congrats on the milestone..wishing you many more..

Sowmya said...

oh..so creative..beautiful cookie christmas tree..lovely presentation n awesome clicks..I would love to attend workshops if you conduct 1 :)

My attempt at The Julie/Julia project said...

Wonderful clicks...amazing shortbread tree... Congratulations on completing a milestone :)

Gayathri's Cook Spot said...

Congratulations Nithya! The christmas tree is wonderful. Great!

Suma Rowjee said...

Wow!! The cookie tree looks delightful Nithya! And the almond finger cookies sound yummy yumm, almond extract does wonders to the flavor of the bake.

Congratulations and wish you many many more hits!!

Shanthi said...

Wonderfully stacked and as good as ever

rpcooks said...

this is fantastic !! your tree, innovation to the heights !!

MindfulMeanderer said...

Congratulations on the milestone :)
n hehe I saw the windmill being used.

Vani said...

You are so creative with your pictures, Nithya! Love that Christmas tree.

Kurinji said...

Fantastic!!!!
Kurinji

kitchen queen said...

wonderful and tempting presentation.

Manjulaprabakaran said...

There is no words to describe dear...:) u always rock.

Santosh Bangar said...

cookiea and almond sticks are superb presentation is marvellous and clicks are wonderful
1st time here my blog is simle not like u . do visit

Gayu said...

I have always admired your creativity and your awesome photography..Great idea and great presentation..Way to go Nithi..Congratulations on your achievement..

Gayu
http://ensamayalarangam.blogspot.com

Sanctified Spaces said...

once again a lovely pic.Congrats again on the milestone.

Kanchan said...

100000 hits !!!! way to go gurl !!!
Keep it up.. many more zeroes will be added to tat number :)

As usual awesome clicks !

Lakshmi said...

lovely and fantastic pictures nithi! am sure they tasted great too :)

chromophore said...

wow ur tree looks super cute! ur imagination knows no bounds :) amazing! :) - Poornima

Sandhya Hariharan said...

U are sooper creative Nithi.. .I have told u many a times.. .Taking effort to do an extra step in presentation can b just you :)

Keep it up Nithi!! Congrats on 1L visitors..

Pavithra said...

Beautiful pictures, lovely and yummy shortbread cookies. Congrats on your hits and wish u good luck in future too. Awesome clicks as always... Merry christmas !!!

Smita Srivastava said...

The cookies look so wonderful . love ur creative clicks ... Congrats on the milestone :) :)

Shanavi said...

marvelous dear, awesome.speechless now..Love ur work dear

Priya said...

I have any words to say Nithya, wat a beautiful and cute looking cookies, loved ur cookie tree, truly awesome..

Lavi said...

My Comment is same that of sharmilee's. Such a Great sense of styling!

Panchpakwan said...

Yummy cookies...lovely presentation Nithya!

Veggie Hut said...

too good for words... i a love the idea for short bread cookies.. will try out soon.. cheers

Kairali sisters said...

Fantabulous cookies and beautifully presented and photographed girl..You are something :-)

divya said...

Wonderful clicks...amazing ...

Swathi said...

Looks delicious. congrats on your blog hits, wishing more hits in future.

Priya (Yallapantula) Mitharwal said...

wow Nithya, you have simply out done yourself, amazing presentation !!!

Nisha said...

Hi i'm so drooling :)

swapna said...

Love ur clicks and the creation....Keep it coming!!

Soumya said...

You are very creative and brilliant....keep rocking...The tree and the whole presentation looks awesome as always...

Jisha said...

cookies looks delicious and clicks are superb...

savitha ramesh said...

cookies look awsome and superb clicks

Pushpa said...

Congratulations Nithya,awesome clicks and treats as usual,Merry Christmas.

Vandana Rajesh said...

yummy..looks so delicious..absolutely amazing pics. Very creative and beautiful indeed.

Priti said...

Looks awesome ...what patience's u hav ...Congrats n way to go

Ananda Rajashekar said...

cookie Christmas tree is such a beauty :)

Satya said...

Its all cooking and baking all over the food blogs... and unfortunately I can't bake as I have no oven here. Happy christmas to you too..

Tres Delicious said...

The short bread cookies look great, such delicacy. Love your blog Nithya, nice pictures.

srilatha said...

heyy nithya.. u alwayss rock !!! shortbreads looks amazing .. the way u presented it is mindblowingg...love your blog.. :)

aterrao said...

I really like your recipes. There is a new platform where you can upload them and are seen with a design adapted to iPad. You can also link to your blog, get statistics... It is called cibos.me

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