These are a family recipe and one that my Nana makes every year. They’re also my favorite Christmas cookie. I try to convince myself that they’re only a Christmas cookie because as soon as I stop thinking that way I’ll be making them every week, and no one needs dozens of shortbread cookies a week to eat! lol
The one difference you may notice between these and your average shortbread cookie is the use of margarine. I’m sure that you could use all butter. In fact the recipe is written “1 lb butter (sub 1 cup margarine for 1 cup butter), so I’m sure at some point that’s how it was made. My Nana though, she’s always made it with the margarine, and I’ve never heard a complaint, so I see no reason to change things now.
First off, get your butter, margarine and sugar in a large bowl.
Beat the crap out of it until it’s nice and fluffy.
Add your flour slowly, in multiple additions. You’ll see that it calls for 4–5 cups of flour. I usually end up around 4.5 cups.
This is where you want your dough to be. You want it to feel fairly dry, but it should still easily hold its shape when you squish it together. If you go too far, just had a little bit of water to get it back where it should be.
Kneed the dough into a a couple of balls, then roll out on a floured surface. Make sure you keep flouring the dough and the rolling pin to keep it from sticking. You want it to be about 1/4” thick.
Cut into shapes and place on a lined baking sheet. Dust the top of the cookies with white sugar, and in this house, we always add a slice of candied cherry. SO freaking good! Throw them in the oven for about 10 minutes.
Perfect! You’re looking for the edges to be just kissed golden brown. Move them to a rack to let them cool completely.
Here’s the printable:
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup margarine
- 1 cup white sugar, plus more for dusting
- 4 to 5 cups all-purpose flour
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF with a rack in the middle position.
- Cream together the butter, margarine and sugar until fluffy.
- Slowly add the flour, in multiple additions, until the dough is crumbly and slightly dry, but easily holds its shape when pressed. Knead dough into 3 balls.
- Generously flour your counter, then roll the dough out to ¼" thickness.
- Cut into shapes, place on a lined baking sheet and dust with white sugar.
- Bake for 10 - 12 minutes, until the edges are just beginning to turn golden brown.