Almond Shortbread Cookies

Shortbreadcookies

From afternoon tea parties to swanky dinners, shortbread cookies are always in style! Why? Well, it must be because you can do pretty much whatever your imagination desires with them. Round shaped with sprinkles, heart shaped with icing –and that’s only the decorating. But for those who choose the more subtle side of things, just change the flavoring. Toss in some almond essence for a sophisticated alternative, here’s how:

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cup butter

2 cups flour

3/4 cup icing sugar

1/2 cup ground almonds

1 tsp almond essence

Pinch of salt

Dough2

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven at 350 Fahrenheit

2. Mix the sifted flour with the ground almonds, and the pinch of salt. In a separate bowl, mix the softened butter until smooth and add the sugar. Continue mixing.

3. Add the almond essence to the butter-sugar concoction until fully incorporated. Slowly add the flour mix and form your dough.

4. Roll the dough and cut it using whatever shape you choose. Stick them into the oven for about 10 minutes.

Style is served!

 

Care for some Orange-Almond Cranberry Clusters?

Orange-almond cran clusters

I’m not going to lie, these cookies turned out to be pretty good! No no, they’re actually GREAT and all because I couldn’t find the bag of golden raisins in the cupboard. That’s right, I was going to make raisin cookies. You read it correctly –r-a-i-s-i-n-s. The tiny little things that try to pass for chocolate chips but when you take a bite, it’s more often than not a bite of disappointment.  We all know how the saying goes: “raisin cookies are the reason I have trust issues”.

So anyway, it was time to improvise: what did I happen to have at home? Dried cranberries? Check. Almond slivers? Check. Oranges, sugar, vanilla essence? Check, check, and check! I mixed these together and popped spoonfuls into the oven, only to have the house fill with the scent of citrusy goodness –ah, the smell of success!

These clusters flew off the plate, and were equally popular with friends at school. After bringing some to lecture, this is the text message from one of the taste testers(and I quote):

“OMG THESE COOKIES THOUGHHH. So delicious!!! :’(“

But enough with the bragging! Here’s how to make your very own batch:

2 cups of flour

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt

1 cup of sugar

170 grams of unsalted, softened butter

1 large egg

1/4 cup of milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

3/4 cup of dried cranberries

1 cup of toasted(optional) almond slivers

Grated peel of 1 orange

Almonds

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenheit
  2. OPTIONAL: Spread the almonds evenly on a pan on the stovetop over medium heat, and let them toast until they turn a light golden brown(5-6 minutes), while mixing frequently with a spatula. Toasting them adds an extra bit of flavour rather than when they’re raw.
  3. In a bowl, mix all the dry ingredients: the flour, with the baking powder, and salt. I usually sift the flower into the bowl to get rid of any lumps
  4. Then add the sugar and stir, followed by the softened butter, egg, and milk. Mix all of these together (either by hand with a spoon, or the a food processor)  until the dough is smooth
  5. Add the cranberries and almonds into the mix until fully incorporated, along with the grated peel of the orange
  6. Place spoonfuls into a greased or parchment covered baking pan about  2 inches apart and flatten them
  7. Bake  for 10-12 minutes (or longer, or less -baking time depends on your oven so just keep an eye on them)

Try these cranberry-almond orange clusters, you won’t be disappointed.

Style is served!