I’m sure it’s no great surprise that I’m not into sports. I mean, I dunno…I grew up watching football, cheering on the Colts. Basketball was a part of my daily life. I mean, hello? I grew up in Indiana. I get sports. I get the rules. I know what’s going on… Hockey is fun.
I just don’t care. Except when I go to live games…those are fun. What with the snow cones and cotton candy and whatnot. Otherwise, meh. I’d rather bake something, glue something, or sew something. Or go hiking or camping or bike riding. Or watch Galaxy Quest or Brave or Harry Potter for the bajillionth time. Or read.
Last night, around 7:30 (PST…so pretty much around the time the game was ending), my friend Tina asked me if we watched the game. I’m pretty sure she knew that was a big fat no, but I told her no anyway (neither did she). And also, that I didn’t even know who was playing (neither did she…we are so with it).
Seriously. Even last night, after the game was pretty much over, I still didn’t even know who was playing.
Turns out it was the Ravens and the 49ers, in case you were wondering.
Actually, when I was a kid, I loved the 49ers. Oh, Joe Montana! Be still my heart! And also, hubba hubba.
The only thing I knew for certain about yesterday’s game was something about the power going out. Uh…oopsy.
So anyway…I haven’t looked it up, but I’m under the impression that the Ravens won?
Whatever. I made cookies. For Valentine’s Day. They have cinnamon and red hots candy in them.
And they are absolutely the best shortbread cookies I have ever had.
I like to roll my shortbread cookies on the thicker side. I don’t like crisp, browned shortbread. Shortbread should be light, buttery, and flaky, so I roll the dough to about 3/8 of an inch thick.
I decided that since Valentine’s Day is on its way, and since cinnamon and red hots are all, you know, hot stuff Valentiney, why not make the cookies even sweeter? I pressed my cookies with this toast stamp that, so far, has failed to work on toast, but has been most excellent on cookies. Glad it hasn’t been a total waste.
It really works wonderfully on cookie dough. If you do this, just be sure to press down evenly on all of stamp. You can also use regular stamps (well cleaned or only for food use) to achieve the same effect. Although, I find that regular stamps work better with plain shortbread.
If you don’t have any stamps, you can also use cookie cutters to add shapes to your dough. I just used varying sizes of heart shaped cutters, and pressed them gently into the dough (just enough to leave an impression).
It doesn’t even matter, because these are really wonderfully delicious. They have all the great flaky butteriness of plain shortbread, with the added benefit of sweet, spicy, fragrant cinnamon. They’re pink and candy filled, and truly my favorite flavor of cookie that doesn’t have chocolate in it.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to dip some of these in chocolate, because chocolate.
Cinnamon Red Hots Shortbread
Makes 8 to 10 cookies, depending on how big you cut them
**For vegan/dairy free and gluten free recipes, make sure all of your sugars and candies are vegan and dairy and gluten free**
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened (margarine for vegan/dairy free)
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups flour (GF flour for gluten free)
6 tablespoons crushed red hots candies
1 teaspoon cinnamon extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
sugar, sprinkles, or red hots for garnishing, optional
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the butter and confectioners’ sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the salt, flour, and crushed candy, and continue beating until everything is fully incorporated and the mixture resembles wet sand with large clumps. Stir in the extracts just until a soft, smooth dough forms, about 30 seconds. If the mixture is very dry, stir in a little cream to pull it together.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface, and shape as desired (press into a shortbread pan or mold, press individual cookies, or roll to about 3/8-inch thickness and cut) and sprinkle with the sugar or sprinkles, if desired. If using candy, don’t add it until the cookies come out of the oven.
Bake for 30-35 minutes in a shortbread pan, or 25-30 minutes as large cookies. Bake for 15 minutes for smaller bite sized cookies.
Allow to cool completely before serving.
Recipe by Darla