Wednesday, April 7, 2010

French Butter Cookies

These butter cookies are delightfully simple and delicious. By themselves, they are delicate with a light crispiness with a deep vanilla flavor. The recipe calls for a teaspoon of vanilla but I added about 1 tablespoon AND I added one freshly scraped vanilla bean. I love a strong vanilla flavor. I wasn't intending on dressing them up with a pink vanilla buttercream but I thought they looked a little boring and needed a little somethin somethin. Besides, I just love the look of homemade sandwich cookies. So a few cookies just got a little fancy drizzle of the buttercream but the rest were sandwiched together with a thick layer of it!

You don't have to go all the way with the buttercream but you really should try and make these butter cookies. They kind of resemble a sugar cookie but are a little more delicate. The recipe calls for flattening the ball of dough with a fork and a criss cross pattern. I just used a drinking glass to flatten them. I wanted a smooth top. I highly recommend adding extra vanilla also. The vanilla bean addition is incredible. Such a simple little cookie but so much flavor. I will definitely make these again.

They sure are kind of boring looking aren't they?

I'm of the belief that icing makes everything taste better!

French Butter Cookies

Virginia Willis, Bon Appetit, Y’All: Recipes and Stories from Three Generations of Southern Cooking

2 cups all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tarter

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)

1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening (crisco at room temp)

1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

1 large egg, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • In a bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking soda, and cream of tarter. Set aside.
  • In a bowl of a heavy duty mixer fitted with the paddle, cream the butter and shortening on medium speed till light and fluffy.
  • Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat on low speed until smooth.
  • Add the egg and vanilla extract and continue beating on low until well combined.
  • On low speed, slowly add the reserved dry ingredients. Beat well till combined.
  • Cover the dough with plastic wrap and transfer to the refridgertor and chill until very firm, at least 2 hours.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Using a melon baller or small ice cream scoop, take some dough and shape into 1 inch balls.
    (Keep remaining dough in the refrigerator, as it must stay chilled)
  • Place the dough balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and press with the tines of a fork to flatten.
  • Bake until pale golden, but not brown for 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Cool slightly on the baking sheet on a rack.
  • Then, using a spatula, transfer the cookies to the rack to cool completely.


Blasé said...

There are 2 things I enjoy in 'French'.

1. Cookies

2. Kissing

cookies and cups said...

Loved that you added the vanilla bean! They sounds great!

Marnie said...

That looks so good!

lorenabr said...

Yummy :)