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Named for its crumbly texture, shortbread is just right to enjoy with your coffee or tea. Orange spice shortbread with a subtle flavor of cinnamon and ginger along with a hint of orange makes this cookie delicious. The chocolate makes it decadent.
Holiday Cookie Tray
I am sharing orange spice shortbread now so you can make it for the holidays. These cookies are a lovely addition to your holiday cookie tray. They are pretty in appearance and unique in flavor adding variety and interest.
Gift from the kitchen
I think these shortbread cookies really make a lovely gift. Wrap individually in a small treat bag and tie up with a bow to leave on the desk of a co-worker. Send in to teachers as a sweet treat during their busy day.
Package the whole pan-full and share your love with a homemade gift from your kitchen.
Have a baker on your gift-giving list? Give them their own shortbread pan and maybe they will make you a batch! The pans are a little costly but what a lovely gift. One that will be used over and over for many occasions.
Shortbread is a classic Scottish dessert traditionally made with 1 part white sugar, 2 parts butter and 3 parts flour. Modern recipes sometimes substitute confectioners sugar for granulated sugar as in this recipe.
Preparing the pan
Lightly spray a shortbread pan and, using your fingers or a napkin, make sure all of the surfaces and groves are covered. See suggestions below if you do not have a shortbread pan. I have never had a problem with the shortbread sticking or with it releasing easily when inverted after baking.
Making the dough
Add the sugar, spices and orange peel to the creamed butter and combine.
Add the flour and mix just until incorporated. My mixer did a great job and I did not knead the dough after mixing.
Press the dough evenly into the shortbread pan.
(Not shown in this pic) Prick the entire surface with a fork.
Bake until lightly browned.
Allow to cool a few minutes; loosen edges with a knife and flip the pan over onto a wooden cutting board. I place the cutting board on top of the shortbread and then flip them together.
While still warm, cut into wedges with a pizza cutter or serrated knife. If you wait until the shortbread is cool, it will be difficult to cut neatly.
Isn’t it beautiful!
Chocolate for dipping
Add semi-sweet chocolate chips and a small amount of shortening to a shallow plate. Microwave on power 3 for 30 second increments, stirring each time, until chips are completely melted.
Dip or spread chocolate onto a portion of the shortbread.
Place on a rack; refrigerate until chocolate is firm. Share the love 🙂
Chocolate Dipped Orange Spice Shortbread Recipe
- 1/2 cup butter at room temperature
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar (unsifted)
- 2 tsp. grated orange peel
- 1/4 tsp. ginger
- 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 cup flour (unsifted)
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 tsp. shortening
Cream the butter until it is nice and light. Cream in the powdered sugar, the grated orange peel and the spices. Now work in the flour. Knead the dough on an unfloured board until smooth.
Spray the shortbread pan very lightly with a non-stick vegetable oil spray. Firmly press the dough into the shortbread pan. Prick the entire surface with a fork, and bake the shortbread right in the pan at 325 degrees for about 30-35 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Let the shortbread cool in its pan for about 10 minutes before you loosen the edges with a knife and flip the pan over into a wooden cutting board. If the shortbread does not come right out, tap one edge of the pan. Cut the shortbread into serving pieces while it is still warm.
Making shortbread without a special shortbread pan
For sure, the shortbread is easy to make and really professional looking using a shortbread pan. If you do not have a shortbread pan, you can still make these cookies.
Lightly grease a round 9″ cake pan. Line the pan with parchment paper after greasing if you are concerned about the shortbread sticking in your particular pan. Bake as above or until light golden brown across the top surface, and a deeper golden brown around the edges.
Making shortbread on a cookie sheet
I have made this same recipe using an air-bake cookie sheet with good results. The dough will spread out and the finished cookies will be larger, thinner and a bit crispier. I baked them for the same amount of time as above. We think they are delicious, especially with a sprinkling of chopped nuts.
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