This year my two oldest sons are attending different schools. I was so sad when I heard that the school my oldest son goes to was no longer offering a pre-k 3 program. So I decided to send my middle son to a small school up the street from our house that many of our neighbors attend. Since he is in private school, he has to wear a uniform. Knowing my children and their inability to stay clean for more than about 5 minutes after getting dressed, I opted to look for used uniforms. I knew that as soon as they were ruined, I wouldn’t feel tons of pressure to try to clean them or guilt about spending lots of money on something that was so quickly stained or ripped. I was lucky and caught the $1 uniform sale outside of school one morning. But I realized that I didn’t have enough shirts since I needed to send in extra clothes in case of accidents at school. Amazingly, when I texted my neighbor who had boys older than mine to see if she had any extra uniforms that they have grown out of, she very generously gave me a giant stack of short sleeve and long sleeve shirts. I offered to pay her for them, but she refused me so I did the next best thing that I could think of, I paid her in cookies. To be honest, paying people in baked goods is one of my favorite forms of payment these days. The cookies that I decided to make for her were these simple shortbread cookies from Preppy Kitchen. They are easy to make, buttery with a nice salt finish and absolutely delicious. The best thing though, is that not only did our neighbors love these cookies, we love the new school too! It is so sweet and loving, my son’s teachers are amazing and kind. The best thing of all is that my son loves going to school and is making his own new friends! (They are different than the new friends he meets that go to his brother’s school, these are HIS new friend)
As usual, I doubled the original recipe so that I would have enough to share with my friends, but I will share a link at the bottom of the post to the original recipe with measurements for a single batch.
The ingredients needed for this recipe are – 20 tablespoons of room temperature salted butter (284 g), 1 cup of powdered sugar (120 g), 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste, 3 cups of all-purpose flour (348 g) and 1 teaspoon of course sea salt (8 g).
To begin making the cookies in the bowl of my stand mixer, I combined the butter and vanilla and beat them with the paddle attachment on medium speed for 3 minutes. Then, I added in the powdered sugar and mixed until it was combined. Next, I added the flour and the salt to the mixer and mixed until the flour was all incorporated. I used my silicone sided paddle to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure everything was mixed in properly. After that, I turned the dough out onto a large sheet of plastic wrap and used my hands to shape it into a large rectangular prism. I wrapped it tightly in plastic wrap and placed it on a sheet pan and put it in my freezer. I set a timer for 10 minutes and turned the prism over every 10 minutes to try to give each side an opportunity to lay flat on the try and try to have the flattest sides possible. I froze the dough for 40 minutes total.
While the cookies are chilling, I preheated my oven to 350 F degrees. I also lined 2 sheet pans with parchment paper and used binder clips to hold the paper in place so that it doesn’t slide off while taking the pans out of the oven with oven mitts on (yes I have done this several times and ended up with cookies in the bottom of my oven, on my oven door and on the floor – it feels horrible!) Next, I took the cookie dough out of the freezer and sliced it into thick 1/2 inch slices. I was able to get about 25 cookies out of my log of dough. Then I spread them out on my sheet pans and used a fork to dock the cookies 3 times each. I put the trays in the oven for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, I rotated the cookie sheets and swapped the top and bottom pans and baked them again for another 5 minutes.
Once the timer went off, I let the cookies cool for 3 minutes on the tray and then transferred them to this super cool new stacked wire rack that my sisters gave me for my birthday this year. Once these cookies cool they have a slight crisp to their edges, a nice soft center and are so easy to eat more than one! I hope these cookies are the next thing you try to bake because everyone will love them.
Recipe: Simple Shortbread Cookies
- 20 tablespoons of room temperature butter (284 g)
- 1 cup powdered sugar (120 g)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour (348 g)
- 1 teaspoon course sea salt (8 g)
- Put the butter and vanilla in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat for 3 minutes on medium speed.
- Add the powdered sugar and mix until combined. Add the flour and salt and mix until combined. Be sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure all ingredients are incorporated.
- Dump the dough onto a large sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a rectangular prism. Wrap the dough tightly in the plastic wrap and place on a cookie sheet that fits in your freezer.
- Every 10 minutes, turn the dough onto a new side to try to help the sides freeze flat. Freeze for 40 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F degrees. Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper and secure the paper with binder clips.
- Remove the dough from the oven and slice into 1/2 inch slices. Spread the cookies out on the baking sheet and use a fork to dock the cookies into the pattern of your choice.
- Bake for 5 minutes and then rotate and swap the baking sheets from top to bottom. Bake for another 5 minutes.
- Take the sheet pans from the oven and allow the cookie to cool on them for 3 – 5 minutes. Allow the cookies to finish cooling on wire racks.
Recipe adapted from Preppy Kitchen