I don’t come from a family of bakers. There are no fond memories of my grandmother in an apron slaving over fruit cakes or ginger bread houses, or of my Mom whipping up fresh baked pies or loaves of bread. This is not to say that there was NEVER baking but it’s just not something our family is known for.
Don’t worry though. I wasn’t completely deprived of baked deliciousness as a child. My Mom did have a few family favourites to whip up each Christmas and when I eventually took over the holiday baking I kept a couple of those recipes close at hand. Even though our family is quite small I still find myself baking enough for an army just because…well, it’s Christmas time and that’s just what I do!
I have added my own recipes to the collection over the years but there are some traditions that I just can’t bear to let go. You can’t have Christmas baking without shortbread! But since we are lazy bakers we don’t bother with the kinds of shortbread that require cutting or shaping…we roll with the easy-peasy Whipped Shortbread.
- 1 pound butter, room temperature
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 1/2 cup corn starch
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- In a large bowl, cream butter and vanilla with electric beater.
- In a separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients and stir.
- Add dry ingredients gradually to butter mixture, continuing to beat with electric beater until light and fluffy.
- Drop by teaspoon onto ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes (depending on your oven) until cookie bottoms are just barely brown around edges. Let cool on baking sheet 3-5 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
Optional: Decorations. I use dried cranberries. My Mom used maraschino cherry pieces. Red candy sprinkles melt into the cookies and turn pink. I have drizzled them with chocolate which really takes them to another level.
Makes about 3 1/2 dozen depending on the size of your cookies.
Sealed in a canister these will keep for up to 2 weeks (if they last that long!).