Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Fairy Bites

One of the easiest cookies to make is shortbread. It has so few ingredients, requires very little time, and one tiny square can be as satisfying as any other large cookie. So, out of laziness, I made these little shortbread bites. I used 100s & 1000s, the Australian version of nonpareils, that a friend mailed me awhile ago. They were so festive and pretty!

These came together really quickly. They didn't crumble because you cut them into squares before they're baked, rather than afterward, so they hold their shape. I read reviews of the original recipe on the Land O' Lakes website, and people recommended doubling the recipe but still making it in an 8x8 pan, so that the squares would a little more substantial. I did this, and I'm glad I did. I'd definitely suggest doing that if you make it, too.

shortbread

Fairy Bites
Pink Piccadilly Pastries, adapted from Land O' Lakes

1/2 cup butter, slightly softened
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
4 tsp multi-colored nonpareils

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Line 8-inch square baking pan with plastic wrap (or cut parchment to fit) leaving 1-inch overhang.

Combine butter, sugar and almond extract in medium bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy. Reduce speed to low, add flour and salt. Beat until well mixed. Stir in nonpareils.

Knead mixture 4-5 times in bowl until dough forms a ball. Pat dough evenly into prepared pan. Use overhang to lift dough from pan. Cut dough into 1/2-inch squares. Gently place squares 1/2 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake approximately 15 minutes or until bottoms just begin to brown.

Yield: about 100 little squares

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