I heart it when I find a recipe and just can’t wait to try it. I mean, seriously, isn’t it great when you flip through a recipe book (or are surfing the inter-webz) and you find that one recipe that gets your taste buds going and your hands itching to pull out all those ingredients?!!
That’s how I felt about this recipe. That’s how I like to pick my recipes… sigh.
I’m back to the happy baker’s recipe book (well, she’s just so darn happy… and so am I, so why not right?)… Erin baked an (i’m not boy crazy) toffee maple shortbread… just the thought of maple and toffee together made my mouth water. There was only one thing… I didn’t have any maple extract. And I really try to stay away from imitation extract when possible… so I swapped out the maple for some vanilla. Am I ever happy that I did!!!
The shortbread ended up being nice and crunchy, with the surprise of the toffee bits (which luckily didn’t overwhelm the buttery base), and the vanilla was just a nice subtle compliment. I think I have a winner. AND I am totally inspired for my holiday baking (I know… it’s only May and I’m already thinking Christmas baking… sad, but true): cherry-chocolate shortbread. Yep. That’s right. I bet you can’t wait for me to share those with you eh? Well… knowing me, I’ll be making them sooner rather than later… I do need to test them out right?
If you’re in the mood for a delicious cookie (which I might add would go GREAT with ice cream and freezes well), turn on your oven and whip these together. Totally worth it. I promise.
Toffee Vanilla Shortbread
3/4 c. butter, room temperature
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 1/4 c. all purpose flour
1/2 c. toffee baking bits
Preheat your oven to 300 F. Spray your 8-inch square baking pan with some non-stick spray and set aside.
In the bowl of your stand-mixer (using the paddle attachment), beat together the butter and powdered sugar; increasing the speed to medium, you want it to get like and fluffy.
Add the vanilla extract and the salt. Continue to beat together.
Lower the speed of the stand-mixer and stir in the flour and toffee pieces.
Erin’s recipe says not to over mix… I took that to mean that the batter should come together and be as smooth as possible (given toffee bits).
Once the batter has come together, put it in your square pan and gently pat the dough out (get it nice and even); I used my fingers… just wet them a little and the batter will spread nicely.
Bake for 35 – 40 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Place your pan on a wire rack and allow to cool before cutting them into squares.
note: you’ll notice that I use my zester as my guideline for cutting my squares… I was able to get over 2 dozen shortbread’s out of this recipe… and they were evenly cut and sized! Gotta love that trick :0)