Traditional Shortbread Cookies

Traditional shortbread cookies looking not so traditional ;) Love the cute doggie design I saw online which was used to make Horlicks cookies so I decided to incorporate this cookie design into my traditional shortbread cookies. Do note that because I made some traditional looking ones and some animal-shaped ones so I cannot tell you for sure how much this recipe can yield. I can only tell you that I managed to make 10 pieces of the 3 x 7 cm by 1-inch thick cookies and 21 pieces of the animal-shaped cookies. *P/S: 2 pieces of the animal-shaped cookies went 'missing' before I could take a picture of it :P

And yes, I want to touch a bit on the butter. Have you often wondered if a recipe calls for butter, should you be using the regular salted butter or unsalted butter? Traditionally, unsalted butter was used in baking because it was considered a superior product as compared to the salted one. Salt is used as a preservative and hence unsalted one was thought to be better. However in this era, the quality of salted butter is not any inferior than the unsalted one. The only concern is that the salt content in the salted butter may varies from brand to brand. Hence, using unsalted butter give us a control of how much salt we want in the bake or food. Some swear that salt enhances and brings out the full flavour of sweet bakes and dishes. Nowadays, using salted or unsalted butter is really a matter of preference and not right or wrong rules.

So how do I read a recipe? For recipe calling for butter, it's understood as salted butter but you can always use unsalted one and add a pinch of salt. If you prefer just unsalted butter, it's alright too. Those that specifically called for unsalted butter, do use just unsalted butter. If a recipe indicate the use of unsalted butter plus a certain amount of salt, it seems alright to me to replace the unsalted butter with the regular salted butter but do omit the salt in this case. If the recipe requires salted butter,'s very clear cut in this instance, just use salted butter.

For this shortbread cookies, you can use salted butter, unsalted butter with a pinch of salt or just unsalted butter like me, it's perfectly fine. After the first trial, you may want to increase or reduce the amount of sugar too. It really doesn't matter. Recipes are all about tweaking and substitution to fit our lifestyle and cater to our liking and convenience. What's good in a recipe when it doesn't suit your taste or meet your needs and liking?

Personally, I find this recipe a keeper and I will definitely bake this again. Hope you will like it too :) Do leave me a comment or pm me a picture if you have tried the recipe.

- 1 block of butter 227g (I'm using SCS unsalted butter)
- 2 cups (250g) plain flour
- 1 cup (100g) corn flour
- 3/4 cup (90g) icing sugar
- a handful of Koko Crunch
- a small handful of chocolate chips
- a tiny handful of chocolate rice

1) Sift corn flour and plain flour into a bowl. Set aside.

2) Using the mixer, cream butter and icing sugar until light and fluffy.

3) Off the mixer and fold the sifted flour into the creamed mixture. Knead well. Wrap dough in cling wrap and rest/chill in fridge for at least half an hour.

4a) For the traditional ones: roll out the dough between two sheets of baking paper to 1cm thick and cut into 3 x 7cm fingers. Place the cut fingers on cookie tray lined with parchment paper and prick around the edges of each finger with a fork.

4b) For the animal-shaped ones: divide the dough into 15g small dough. Roll the divided dough into a ball between palms. For the panda design, the eyes are koko crunch, ears and nose are chocolate chips. For the doggie design, koko crunch for the ears, chocolate rice for the eyes and chocolate chip for the nose.

5) Bake in pre-heated at 150c for 25 - 30 minutes until pale golden.


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