I’m a bit addicted to these gorgeous Nordic Ware tins. I’d totally forgotten that I’d even bought this one until I was looking back on my Christmas posts from last year. This Nordic Christmas shortbread is better, I think, baked slightly thinner, so this recipe actually makes two lots. You can stuff it all in if you want to, but it makes some pretty mammoth slabs of shortbread, which I don’t think are quite as nice as these thinner, more delicate ones. If you don’t have a fancy schmancy tin, press it into a loose bottomed cake tin, then mark the slices out with a knife, cutting about half way through the mixture.
The spicing is, of course, completely up to you. If you want to make truly Nordic Christmas shortbread, then add the cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom. If you’d rather keep it plain, try a teaspoon of vanilla paste. Either way, this is my absolute favourite shortbread recipe, either for pressing into tins or using for cut-out cookies as it keeps its shape really well when baking.
Nordic Christmas shortbread
150g caster sugar
225g salted butter
400g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
Caster sugar, for decorating
Preheat the oven to gas 4/180 C.
Using a food mixer (or a bowl and a wooden spoon if not), cream the sugar and butter until they’re really light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, a little at a time.
Sieve together the flour, baking powder and spices, then with the mixer on low, add them to the mixture and mix just until it comes together into a firm dough.
Remember to split the dough into two now, and reserve the other half for another batch. Butter the tin really well, making sure you get the brush into all the little design details, then press the dough into the tin. Bake for about 20 minutes until light golden brown.
Of course, you can ice the finished shortbread if like, but I like it just simply scattered with caster sugar while it’s still warm. If you’ve got vanilla sugar, so much the better.
EDIT: Sam suggested adding a handful of cranberries and sultanas to the second half of the dough. Oh my word. Gamechanger.
See also, pressing half the dough into a loose bottomed cake tin, adding a thick layer of mincemeat, then topping with the other half of the dough.