Christmas Countdown: Holiday Baked Goods

Season’s Greetings! There are only two sleeps left until Christmas! Can you believe it! Seems like just yesterday December and Christmas was a far off dream…One of my favourite things about the holiday season is having the time and excessive excuse to bake goodies! This year I went a little crazy and baked 200 shortbread cookies. There are still a tonne of things I want to bake and make, but shortbread cookies are among the simplest and easiest to create.

A mixture of Caramel and Jam cookies.

A mixture of Caramel and Jam cookies.

I made shortbread cookies with a Raspberry Rose Jam centre and some with a Salted Caramel centre. Absolutely delectable! I bought the jam and caramel at my favourite Duchess Bake Shop who also carries vanilla bean paste (which is a difficult ingredient to find in Canada!) Essentially, almost anything can be used for the centre. Go with whatever flavour you like.

Duchess’ Raspberry Rose Jam

Vanilla bean paste from Madagascar and a delicious jar of Salted Caramel

Here’s a simple recipe (makes about 100):

  • 2 cups of butter
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 1/2 cup of icing sugar
  • vanilla bean paste
  • Jam or Salted Caramel for centre

First ensure the butter is quite soft without becoming liquid. Place it in a very large bowl. Add in flour and icing sugar and beat until all incorporated into a doughy consistency. Add is vanilla bean paste, add however little or much you want, this is where you can play around with the flavouring.

Butter

Make sure the butter is soft enough to cut into without the butter being liquid.

I suggest mixing the ingredients light together first before beating it with a hand mixer

If you find the dough to be too soft, just refrigerate it for 30 minutes to an hour. If not, start rolling the dough into little balls, about the size of a large gumball. After that is done, make little divets in the cookie dough so that the jam can be placed in the centre. This would also be a good time to heat the oven to 350 degrees. Carefully placed the jam in the centre of the cookie, then bake for approximately 10 minutes….and VOILA! Delicious shortbread cookies for all to share. 

Delicious cookie dough

Cookies filled with jam and salted caramel goodness

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