Thursday, January 27, 2011

Tantalizing Thursday

All month long I have been featuring recipes that were hearty and delicious but still healthier fare. I'm changing it up a bit to showcase one of my favorite cookie recipes because, as I've mentioned recently, Valentine's Day is on the horizon. I honestly believe homemade delights are often and usually much tastier than their store-bought equivalents, and are certainly more reasonable. I also believe anything made from the home kitchen with love is unparalleled. This recipe is simple, easy to roll out and use cookie cutters (heart-shapes, please), and tastes divine. Trust me, I'm usually a "chocolate only" girl when it comes to desserts, but these cookies are a favorite, especially at this time of year. Besides, who needs chocolate cookies when your special someone is definitely going to remember to buy you a huge heart-shaped box of your favorite confections?!
This recipe is from the book holiday Hearts by Pamela Sheldon Johns & Jennifer Barry  Ten Speed Press
c. 2002

Dried Cranberry Shortbread Cookies
These cookies are beautiful and rustic when cut into hearts with a variety of cookie cutters. Sprinkle with confectioners' (powdered) sugar when cooled, if desired.

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners' (powdered) sugar plus extra for dusting (optional)
1/4 cup coarsely chopped dried cranberries
1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (I prefer and use pecans)
2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
Pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with Parchment paper and set aside.
     In a mixing bowl, cream the butter until softened, then beat in the confectioners' sugar. Stir in the cranberries, walnuts (or pecans), flour, and salt and mix well. Press into a large flattened disk, cover well with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
     With a rolling pin, roll out the dough on a floured work surface to a thickness of 14 inch. Cut into hearts with cookie cutters. Gather dough scraps into a ball and repeat the process until all of the dough is used. Place on the prepared baking sheets and bake 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cool completely before dusting with confectioners' sugar.  Makes 2 dozen cookies.

These are scrumptious and so very pretty! Buttery, rich, and sweet cookie with chewy tartness sprinkled throughout is what you'll find in each one. Served with coffee, tea, milk, or Champagne, these cookies will delight you and your Valentine!

Please leave one of your favorite cookie recipes if you are so inclined and please let me know if you actually tried this one, especially if you liked it!

Tomorrow is the week-ending Friday Music Blog. I look forward to seeing you all back here tomorrow for an original topic and the fantastic selections you'll leave!

Today marks the 100th blog I've written since starting this site. I am thrilled to hit this milestone and so very thankful that I have a readership of this caliber! You are interactive, write witty, honest, funny, and poignant responses to my topics, create movie and music resources with me weekly, and check in regularly to see what is going on with the site. Many of you have used my Amazon link which is providing a modest but definite contribution to my family's finances. I am awed, delighted, humbled, honored, floored, overwhelmed, encouraged, and flattered by your support and interest. Hopefully you will stay with me for the next 100 topics... and beyond. Thank you so very much. You all touch my soul.

Lastly, a special shout to a dear friend who is struggling with a personal illness but has unbelievable faith and love surrounding him to beat this setback and live his best life. Bill, I'm here to entertain, encourage, and support you. Thanks for being here, supporting me, and being my friend. If everyone could send a special thought or prayer Bill's way for a speedy and complete recovery I would sincerely appreciate it.


  1. Praying for Bill, removing snow and thinking of cookies... Racer187 out.

  2. Dribbling on the key board here :-)

  3. 2 sticks of butter. I know that one is good.