Sugar & Spice Shortbread
These delicious buttery Sugar & Spice Shortbread cookies are perfect for Christmas. Lightly spiced, they fill the kitchen with the most tempting smells. Adding cornflour is the secret to delicious melt-in-the-mouth shortbread, but you can replace with rice flour or increase the plain flour if you don’t have any. Good quality butter is so important for shortbread (don’t use margarine!), and I’ve used a salted version here rather than adding salt separately.
Makes approx. 35-45 cookies depending on size. (See Tips below for more detail).
- 225g Westgold Salted butter (room temperature, or lightly softened)
- 110g caster sugar (plus a little extra for dusting)
- 225g plain flour
- 110g cornflour
- 3/4 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 tsp nutmeg
- Cream together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
- Sift in flour, cornflour, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix gently and lightly knead to form a dough. Cover and chill in the fridge for 40 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 170°C, and line two baking trays with baking paper.
- Roll dough out to approx. 5mm thick. (I find it easiest to roll onto a sheet of baking paper, and use a lightly floured rolling pin). Cut into shapes. Place onto lined baking tray, and prick with a fork.
- Bake for approx. 20 minutes (depending on size of cookies).
- Leave on tray for a few minutes to firm up, then transfer onto rack to cool.
- Sprinkle with caster sugar while still warm. Enjoy!
- Shortbread cookies tend to keep for longer than other cookies (in theory anyway!). Store them in an airtight container, and they’ll keep well for ten days. Or you can freeze the cookies for up to a month, so they’re ready to whip out when you need.
- This recipe made 24 x Christmas tree cookies (6cm x 9cm) and 22 x star cookies (6cm x 6cm).
- When it’s time to roll out the dough, I find it easiest to roll out half the dough at a time, leaving the other half still covered in the fridge.
- If the dough gets too soft when you’re rolling it out, just cover and pop back into the fridge.
- I use a (clean!) shower cap to cover my dough in the fridge.
- Rather than sprinkling the sugar over the finished cookies, I dip the cookies face down onto a shallow plate of caster sugar. This just makes them look a little neater, with a more even coating of sugar. Plus it’s easy!
- If you’re making different sized cookies, try to keep the same shaped ones on each baking tray. That way they’ll all bake at the same time.
- These cookies won’t change colour much in the oven, so be careful not to overcook. You don’t want them to turn a deeper brown. (It’s important not to overcook any type of shortbread. Because they don’t contain eggs, they don’t actually need much cooking – they definitely don’t need to turn brown!)
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