Birdie was asking for shortbread recipes, and that reminded me that I've never posted our recipe for Lemon Poppy Seed Shortbread. This is one that came from Canadian Living Magazine (Dec 1/92) and we make some every year; it freezes well.
[2008 Update: I baked an 8-inch square pan of this and, for the first time ever, had it turn out underdone; when I cut the pan into squares, the bottoms of the pieces were very damp. I remedied it as best I could by turning the squares upside down on a cookie sheet and baking them a little while longer at 275 degrees; they're not perfect but at least I didn't have to dump the whole batch. So--a reminder to give the pans as long as they seem to need, even if they're turning a bit brown--better that than underdone.]
Lemon Poppy Seed Shortbread
"This recipe can be baked as invidiual cookies or in a square pan." My note: I doubled the recipe this year and baked it in a large pan, cutting it afterwards.
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup icing sugar (confectioner's sugar)
2 tbsp. poppy seeds
2 tbsp. grated lemon rind
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 to 2 tbsp. granulated sugar for sprinkling (or as desired)
In bowl, cream together butter and icing sugar until fluffy; stir in poppy seeds and lemon rind. Gradually blend in flour. Gather dough into ball; chill for 30 minutes if sticky.
If you're rolling and cutting them: On lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness; cut into 2-inch rounds and place on ungreased baking sheets.
If you're baking them in a pan: Press dough into 8- or 9-inch square pan; prick surface all over with fork. My note: I always find a fork really massacres the top of the bars, so I don't do that anymore; but I do prick the surface gently with a toothpick. Sprinkle with a little sugar if you like.
Bake in 300 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes for cookies, or about 35 minutes for square pan, or until set and very faintly browned. Let cookies cool on rack, or let large square cool in the pan before cutting into bars.
Shortbread can be stored in an airtight containers for up to 5 days or frozen for up to a month. Makes about 40 cookies or 24 bars.
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