Sunday, March 17, 2013

Irish Butter Shortbread



                                          Eirinn go brách!

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...This very simple recipe makes a delicious shortbread. It's prepared with just three ingredients and when so few ingredients are used, they'd better all be good. The recipe comes from Rachel Gaffney, who is known to be an expert on shortbread, as well as all things Irish. You can find her blog, Rachel Gaffney's Real Ireland, here. She uses unsalted Irish butter to make the shortbread I'm featuring tonight. Irish butter is a European-style butter that has a higher butterfat content than the butter usually found in American kitchens. It has a richer, creamier texture because it is made from pasteurized fermented cream. Most of us use butter made from cream that is pasteurized but not fermented and that distinction explains the difference in flavor. A recipe such as this, relies on the extra flavor provided by the Irish butter. You'll be able to find the butter in most large supermarkets and specialty grocers. This shortbread is very easy to make and I've found it keeps well if stored in an air-tight container. It is wonderful to serve with afternoon tea or coffee and I really think you'll enjoy this buttery treat. The recipe requires no special instructions, so I am going to bite my Irish tongue and let it speak for itself. Here is how the shortbread is made.

Irish Butter Shortbread...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Rachel Gaffney

Ingredients:
1 cup (2 sticks) Irish unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour + flour for work surface

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
2) Cream together butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, slowly add flour. Continue mixing until dough comes together to form a ball.
3) Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface and roll it out dough to about 1/4-inch thickness, dusting rolling pin with flour as necessary to prevent sticking. Using a 2 1/4-inch round, fluted cutter, cut out dough. Transfer to prepared baking sheet, spacing about 1 inch apart. Gather up any scraps, gently re-roll, and repeat cutting process. Take care not to overwork dough.
4) Transfer baking sheets to oven and bake until shortbread just begins to turn golden, about 30 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Yield: 3 to 4 dozen cookies.

Cook's Notes:

Due to its high fat content, Irish butter only needs a few minutes to come to room temperature. It is best when used 15 minutes after removing from the refrigerator.

Shortbread may be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.







One Year Ago Today: Bibimbap - A Korean Mixed Rice Dish













Two Years Ago Today: A Round-Up of Green Foods for St. Patrick's Day














Three Years Ago Today: Four Farls - A Curiosity from Northern Ireland














Four Years Ago Today: Chilled Avocado Soup - Sopa de Aguacate

22 comments:

Ginny said...

This looks really good, and creamy and rich. I was interested in the Four Farls, but when I clicked it, it said it does not exist anymore. Maybe too old? Three years.

Rue said...

When I was growing up, we only had shortbread at Christmas time. I'm not sure why it hasn't occurred to me, as an adult, to make it during the year. I think I will now!

Pondside said...

I'll bet it's just delicious! The butter in Europe tastes so much better than ours - it must be all that fat!

Life's a shoe said...

looks good! will def try to make this but i have no idea where to get irish butter!

Alessandra said...

Just like my mother in law makes, although I think that she uses salted butter... I must ask her.

Ciao
Alessandra

bellini said...

I can get my hands on some European style butter, and then on some delicious shortbread.

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

Mmmmm I love shortbread. Happy St Patrick's day, Diane

Rosemary said...

I love shortbread . . . and I'll be on the look out for real Irish butter. It's like gold around here. Happy St. Paddy's Day!

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

Lovely! Who wouldn't love a buttery cookie with just three ingredients? Happy St. Patty's Day!

Kim G. said...

I love cultured butter, it taste a little bit sour. And for shortbreads it's the best, worth every penny! Love your shortbreads Mary!

Priya Suresh said...

Those shortbread looks stunning and beautiful.

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

Thanks for explaining the difference in the butter. I always come away from your blog with some new information besides a nice recipe.

Susan Lindquist said...

Mmm ... melt in your mouth good! Happy St Patrick's Day, Mary!

Angie said...

Thanks for visiting my blog ....I get so much pleasure reading your recipes ...and I am gathering a few bready type ones together ready to do some baking. Take Care and long may you blog and bake. xx

A Paixão da Isa said...

nao conhecia mas adorei a historia eles ficarao 5* mt bonitos bravo bjs e um feliz domingo com a sua familia bjs

Angie's Recipes said...

Just 3 ingredients!! I love great food with simple quality ingredients. These shortbread look great!

Wendy said...

I knew about the higher fat content in European butters but I didn't knw about the fermentation for Irish butter. I'll be looking for some to try. These cookies look like they would be perfect with a hot cup of tea!

Cranberry Morning said...

Oh. my. goodness!! Melt-in-your-mouth delicious!

The Café Sucré Farine said...

These look fantastic Mary. I'm such a sucker for shortbread especially really good shortbread like this!

David said...

Mary, We love shortbread but we've always had Scottish shortbread. This Irish version sounds a bit more decadent...and it sounds good! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

http://platanosmangoes.com said...

I just bought Irish butter for my Irish soda bread...what a difference. Your short breads look great!

France@beyondthepeel said...

Your shortbread recipes are always my favorite!

AddThis

Related Posts with Thumbnails