Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Vanilla Coffee Shortbread

Exercise is important.

The ocean is a perfect 30 minute walk from where I am currently living, and just the other day I strolled beside the rocky beach, listened to the gulls flying overhead, connected with the wind as it ran through the tall grass; felt the faint, salty mist on my face, watched the ships in the harbour and just let my mind float away. I love walks where music isn't necessary or missed.

It makes me feel good knowing that I did something good, not only for my body, but for my spirit.

I try to get a good walk in as often as I can, followed by some bicep curls and a few stretches. However, there are somedays when the only exercise I want to do is make cookie dough, and I unapologetically give in. I get in these moods, you see, and usually just on weekends, where if I don't bake or cook something new or different I literally don't know what to do with myself. I had one of those days just a couple of weeks ago, before I unplugged from everything for a while. I just wanted - no, needed to make something, to be in the kitchen and let the heat of the oven warm my toes. The problem with this though, is that I can never seem to actually make up my mind as to what to make! So out of literal panick and desperation, I Googled "I need to bake something now!" and, I kid you not, the very first result was "Weekend Project: Bake Something New!" from The Kitchn. Praise God, this was exactly what I needed. They had a couple of suggestions as to what to make, one of them being Earl Grey Tea Cookies. Unfortunately, I had no Earl Grey tea, which is the result of an unfortunate side effect from this mood - no prior preparation or ingredient shopping, but alas, after a few minutes of pondering and working up some courage, this is my adaptation.

Vanilla Coffee Shortbread

1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon ground coffee
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon water
1/2 cup unsalted butter

Mix dry ingredients together. Use whatever kind of coffee you have. The only choices I had at the time were instant coffee or Foldger's, neither being my first choice but I went with the Foldger's and it still worked well.

I even added a pinch of cinnamon and a dash of cardamom, because I really just can't leave well enough alone.

Add vanilla, butter, and water.

Pulse until dough is formed.

Form the dough into a log. It was in the midst of this step that I realized this was my first time making shortbread like this. It won't be my last.

Wrap log in wax or parchment paper and roll the log smooth. Chill for 30 minutes in the refridgerator.

Preheat oven to 375. Slice dough into cookies approximately 1/3 inch thick.

 Bake until edges are light brown, around 12 minutes. However, I recommend around 10 minutes if you want them to be softer cookies.

Let cool on pan for 5 minutes before transferring to wire wracks.

This is the first recipe I've documented making in my Nan's house especially for my blog. The lighting proves to be a bit of a challenge, but it's exciting to look through all of my Nan's old dishes and see which ones I can use for "props"  :)

I loved these cookies. I think I actually gasped when I took the first bite, which is kind of... weird, but in a really good way. They were buttery, vanilla-y, and crunchy. It makes a small batch, but after having about 5 or 6 of them (which I called dinner - how can you not when they are warm out of the oven?!), I put them in the freezer, and, satisfied, went for a walk  :)

No comments:

Post a Comment